The lion captured on video attacking and dragging the owner of a Marakele Animal Sanctuary in the town of Thabazimbi in Limpopo Province, South Africa, was killed during the encounter, reports News 24.
Shamba the lion recently mauled 72-year-old park owner Mike Hodge (previously reported to be 67), while he was in the big cat’s enclosure investigating an odor. Footage of the incident shows 10-year-old Shamba biting Hodge in the neck area and dragging the man deeper into the enclosure. The attack resulted in Hodge breaking his jaw and sustaining neck injuries.
Family spokesperson Bernadette Maguire told News24 that the lion was shot and killed by a park employee during the attack. A decision which, although it was for the safety of Hodge and others, has upset the park owner, who is currently recovering in the hospital.
“He is very upset about the loss of Shamba and I think he is trying to put up a brave face, but he is really battling to come to terms what has happened,” Maguire told News 24.
Shamba was bottle-raised by Hodge. The park owner, who started Marakele Animal Sanctuary with his wife after moving to South Africa from the U.K., has known the lion who attacked him since the animal was born.
While Hodge and his family are said to be “traumatized” by the ordeal, they are happy that Hodge survived the encounter.
“The prognosis is looking good, provided that his infection stays under control,” Maguire told News 24 about Hodge’s current health, adding that owner recently walked for the first time since the incident.