On the heartwarming scale this rates as a positive scorcher. A forlorn tigress, heartbroken because her own cubs have died, is fooled into adopting a litter of piglets when zoo officials in California wrap them in tiger skins. Such a thing had never been tried before, according to the email which accompanied these pictures as they were sent around the world. Unfortunately, there was a twist in the tiger’s tale.
Though the pictures have not been faked, an animal welfare pressure group investigated and discovered they were actually taken at a zoo in Thailand.
The Sriracha Tiger Zoo, an hour’s drive from Bangkok, has been accused of causing its exhibits unnecessary suffering, and of using stunts to gain publicity.
These pictures must have been part of such a set-up, say experts, because it was unnecessary to wrap the piglets in their cute little tiger-skin coats. It is apparently common practice in Thailand for tigers to suckle pigs, and for pigs to adopt orphaned cubs.
The tigress in these pictures was herself brought up by a sow, and sees pigs as family.
Though she had been given these babies to bring up, it is unclear whether she had lost a litter of her own, as the story claimed.