Vet extracts tooth from the jaws of a tiger

Vet extracts tooth from the jaws of a tiger

A tiger with a sore head is probably best avoided, but this vet was brave enough to reach into his jaws and pull out his painful tooth.

By Lucy Cockcroft
Last Updated: 4:12PM GMT 03 Feb 2009

The big cat, named Johann, was being given a medical check-up before being transported, along with his brother Sirius, from Bergzoo in Halle, Germany, to his new home at the Parc De Felines in Nesle, France.

The sibling Malaysian tigers were born at the zoo in October 2007, but had to be moved because of a lack of space. Their parents are also both at the zoo.

Once they were sedated for transportation in Germany the vet took the opportunity for a quick once-over.

He discovered a lump in Sirius’s mouth which needed to be removed, as well as a milk tooth in Johann’s jaw that had been preventing the new one from coming through.

The vet took his life into his hands and put them into the tigers’ mouths to perform the surgery while the powerful beasts were still comatose.

He also took some blood samples to help researchers as the university in Leipzig wants to develop new vaccines for tigers.

It is hoped the young brothers will help with a successful breeding programme at the Parc De Felines.

The park is home to 120 big cats, spanning 25 of the world’s 36 species. It has been open to the public since 2006.


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