CHINA / SOCIETY
Zoo in Hubei provokes online discussion after substituting dog for wolf
Published: Mar 05, 2021 05:14 AM
Would you feel tricked if you went to a zoo and found out the gorillas and bears weren’t as real as they seemed? 

Tourists in Xianning, Central China’s Hubei Province were furious when they found out that the “wolf” they saw was actually a dog. It drew the attention of thousands of netizens, who joked that the zoo should have used a husky dog, as it’s harder to tell from a real wolf.

"There indeed was a wolf,” a local staffer explained on Wednesday, saying the reason for the situation was that the real wolf had passed away. The dog used in its place had been raised as a watchdog to prevent strangers trespassing into the yard.

The dog and the wolf live together in one cage. Source: Pear Video

The dog and the wolf live together in one cage. Source: Pear Video


On Saturday, a video circulating online claimed that a bear in a zoo in Central China’s Henan Province was in fact a man dressed up as a bear. However, this was denied by staff who said that would be impossible. 

But in 2019, another zoo in East China’s Jiangsu Province featured a “gorilla” that was a human dressed up as the animal. The zoo said it was just intended as an April Fool’s Day joke, after visitors pointed out that they noticed something strange.

Chinese netizens have asked questions about what is going on at the country’s zoos.

One netizen suggested that irregular management, a lack of professional knowledge, and the drive for profits could be causing problems.

When talking about the future of the zoo, another staff member from Xianning forestry office said that conditions were poor and management was lacking, adding that the zoo might be shut down in future.

Some netizens pointed out that many zoos, especially smaller ones, are struggling to survive nowadays. They also expressed concern for the animals who are stuck in cages, sometimes without enough food to eat.

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