This Nov. 2018 file photo shows Sanjiv, a Sumatran tiger at the Topeka Zoo in Topeka, Kansas. City officials say Sanjiv, mauled a zookeeper early Saturday, April 20, 2019 in a secured indoor space at the zoo. Topeka Zoo director Brendan Wiley says the zookeeper was awake and alert when she was taken by ambulance to a hospital. Wiley said he did not know the extent of her injuries. The zookeeper's name has not been released.
Photo: The Topeka Capital-Journal/AP
Photo: The Topeka Capital-Journal/AP

Tiger attacks Kansas zookeeper

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The keeper, whose name hasn’t been released, suffered lacerations and puncture wounds to the back of her head, neck and one arm, Topeka Zoo Director Brendan Wiley said. The keeper was awake and alert when she was taken to the hospital, and is in stable condition, The Topeka Capital-Journal reported.

The incident happened around 9:15 a.m. in an outside tiger habitat and involved a 7-year-old male Sumatran tiger named Sanjiv, the Capital-Journal reported. When the keeper entered the space, Sanjiv "tackled her," Wiley said.

The zoo was open to visitors at the time.

"A few people did see the attack," city of Topeka spokeswoman Molly Hadfield told ABC News.

Other zoo employees were able to lure Sanjiv out of the enclosure with food, Wiley said. If the employees hadn’t done so, "this could have been a very different outcome,” he said.

The zoo was closed for about 45 minutes, but has since reopened, except the tiger exhibit.

No action will be taken against the tiger.

"While this incident is very unfortunate, he did what a wild tiger does," Wiley said.

Zoo officials are investigating the incident, Wiley said.

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