A woman jumped a zoo safety barrier for a selfie with a jaguar. It didn’t end well.

Mar 11, 2019, 3:09 PM | Updated: Mar 12, 2019, 2:00 pm
Jaguar Attack...
A jaguar attacked a young woman who jumped the zoo's barrier to get in close for a selfie. (Photos courtesy of CNN)
(Photos courtesy of CNN)

How far would you go to get the perfect selfie?

One Arizona woman was apparently willing to go within reach of a caged jaguar. On Saturday evening, according to a CNN report, she hopped over the Wildlife World Zoo’s safety barrier and went right up to the animal’s cage, camera in hand.

That daring move had horrific results. Zoo officials say that the jaguar, without leaving its cage, slashed the woman’s arm, embedding its claws into her skin and leaving her with severe lacerations.

The jaguar attack

One guest named Adam Wilkerson told CNN that he rushed over to the scene after hearing a woman screaming for help. When he arrived, he says the woman was pressed against the cage, her arm caught in the jaguar’s claws.

“I could see the claws in her actual flesh,” Wilkerson says.

Wilkerson says that his mother managed to distract the jaguar by shoving her water bottle through the cage. When the bottle fell in, the jaguar released its grip enough for him to pull her free.

“If it weren’t for my mom’s quick thinking with the water bottle,” Wilkerson says, “that jaguar would not have let go of the poor girl’s arm.”

Help arrived after a zoo employee called 9-1-1 and an ambulance rushed the woman to the hospital. She was left with a gash on her arm that required stitches. The woman, however, is expected to recover.

The attack has provoked extreme reactions online ever since Wilkerson uploaded a video of the aftermath to the website Reddit with the header: “My mom, myself and others just saved a girl who’s hand was captured by a Jaguar at Wildlife World Zoo.”

Most have been unsympathetic, pointing the blame on the woman for getting close to the jaguar in the first place.

That includes the injured woman herself, who, according to zoo officials, has since contacted Wildlife World Zoo to take the blame for what happened and to apologize for giving them bad publicity.

The big cat, the zoo says, will not be euthanized over the attack. They say that the enclosure meets federal safety standards. The jaguar will, however, be temporarily taken off of the exhibit.

More to the story

When KSL Newsradio’s Dave and Dujanovic talked about this story on the air, they invited their listeners to call in and share the craziest, most dangerous things they’ve done to get a good photograph – and shared stories of their own.

If you missed their conversation live on the air, you can still hear their stories – including Dave’s close call with a bobcat and Debbie’s with a grizzly bear – on the Dave & Dujanovic podcast.

Dave & Dujanovic can be heard weekdays from 9 a.m. to noon on KSL Newsradio. Users can find the show on the KSL Newsradio website and app, as well as Apple Podcasts and Google Play.

affordable care act

Today’s Top Stories

Dave & Dujanovic

KSL NewsRadio's Dave & Dujanovic discuss how to deal with and overcome seasonal depression....
Mark Jones

How to deal with and overcome seasonal depression

KSL NewsRadio's Dave & Dujanovic discuss how to deal with and overcome seasonal depression.
20 hours ago
The world's largest active volcano is shooting fountains of lava more than 100 feet high and sendin...
Curt Gresseth

Watch out for lava glass near erupting volcano, says U. of U. geologist

Hawaii’s Mauna Loa volcano is still spewing lava and shows no sign of stopping. A University of Utah seismologist discusses a phenomenon called lava glass.
20 hours ago
Samantha Herrera

Increased shoplifting puts pressure on retailers and raises prices

Shoplifting is hitting retailers hard this season. Though retailers lose millions in stolen merchandise, offenders usually go without much punishment.
20 hours ago
Elizabeth Weiler

Financial infidelity: What does the Utah data look like?

The average Utahn would 'reconsider their relationship' if their partner spent $5k without consulting them first, reveals research from coupon birds.
2 days ago
Jeff Zeleny, Eva McKend and Gregory Krieg, CNN

Georgia voters once again have the last word during election season

During a campaign rally for Warnock in Atlanta last week, former President Barack Obama stressed the immediate impact of Democrats potentially winning a 51st Senate seat.
2 days ago
The mayor of Provo, Utah, discusses how popular the city's four-day workweek has been, why it's pop...
Simone Seikaly

A 4-day workweek is working for Provo government

Provo Mayor Michelle Kafusi said she isn't surprised at the positive results reported after a global 4 day workweek pilot program.
2 days ago

Sponsored Articles

Spicy Homemade Loaded Taters Tots...

5 game day snacks for the whole family (with recipes!)

Try these game day snacks to make watching football at home with your family feel like a special occasion. 
Happy joyful smiling casual satisfied woman learning and communicates in sign language online using...

The best tools for Deaf and hard-of-hearing workplace success

Here are some of the best resources to make your workplace work better for Deaf and hard-of-hearing employees.
Team supporters celebrating at a tailgate party...

8 Delicious Tailgate Foods That Require Zero Prep Work

In a hurry? These 8 tailgate foods take zero prep work, so you can fuel up and get back to what matters most: getting hyped for your favorite
christmas decorations candles in glass jars with fir on a old wooden table...
Western Nut Company

12 Mason Jar Gift Ideas for the 12 Days of Christmas [with recipes!]

There are so many clever mason jar gift ideas to give something thoughtful to your neighbors or friends. Read our 12 ideas to make your own!
wide shot of Bear Lake with a person on a stand up paddle board...

Pack your bags! Extended stays at Bear Lake await you

Work from here! Read our tips to prepare for your extended stay, whether at Bear Lake or somewhere else nearby.
young boy with hearing aid...

Accommodations for students who are deaf and hard of hearing

These different types of accommodations for students who are deaf and hard of hearing can help them succeed in school.
A woman jumped a zoo safety barrier for a selfie with a jaguar. It didn’t end well.