A bear raised by monks at the Wat Luang Phor Lamai temple in Thailand mauled a tourist after grabbing him and pulling him into its enclosure, where visitors are allowed to feed the bear over the retaining wall.
“The man had gone to the temple with four or five friends and he was toying with the bear,” Bpae Permpoonsap of the Khon Khao Koo Pai rescue service told the Daily Mail.
Promratee teased the bear by using a rope and dangling a bowl of rice into the animal’s enclosure. This angered the bear, which stood on its hind legs, grabbed the man and dragged him into the enclosure, knocking him unconscious.
The bear attacked Promratee while his friends poked the bear with a metal pole, screamed at the bear and poured water on it in an attempt to stop the attack.
Using its teeth, the bear then dragged Promratee across the dusty enclosure and into its cage where it seemed intent on eating him as it tore flesh from his back.
A person from the group went into the cage with a large stick and beat on the bear until it let go of Promratee, who was pulled to safety by his friends and a monk.
The Daily Mail posted graphic video of the attack, which is far too gruesome to post here.
“We arrived and found the man injured seriously,” Permpoonsap of the rescue service told the Daily Mail. “He had been with his friends and wanted to feed the animals.
“He was lucky to survive, and he is in hospital now and able to talk.”
The monks at the temple care for two dozen wild boars in a nearby field and keep a bear in an enclosure where they care for it and allow guests to feed it.
According to the Daily Mail, the head abbot at the temple said a day before the attack that some of the creatures were hungry because they were not being given enough food, and he appealed for the public to feed the bear.
Promratee apparently made the trip to the temple to do so but made a huge mistake by teasing the bear.
“If you taunt a hungry bear, you’re likely to get hurt,” a spokesman for People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals told the Daily Mail. “Bears are powerful predators who, in the wild, spend most of their time foraging and exploring home ranges that may cover thousands of miles – and smart people respect them enough to leave them alone.”
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