MEXICO CITY – A tiger that fatally mauled a 56-year-old man on the roof of a Mexico City food wholesaler died of complications from being sedated, officials said Tuesday.
The tiger and a lion kept in a small cage attacked their caretaker, Luis Aguilar, on Monday when he was feeding them, according to a statement by Mexico City police.
The felines were lured back into their cages with chicken meat and then tranquilized, it said.
The tiger died late Monday when the animals were being transferred to a nearby zoo along with an iguana and a macaw also held in the building, a spokesman for Mexico's environmental protection agency, Augusto Cabrera, said Tuesday.
"The tiger had more than 33 pounds of chicken meat when he was sedated and that caused him to asphyxiate," Cabrera said.
The Mexican media reported that witnesses said Aguilar was giving the animals food when the lion swatted at his legs and the tiger helped pull him down.
Aguilar had looked after the animals since they were cubs, police said.
The business owner and four employees were arrested for allegedly trying to stop police from entering the building, the statement said. Officials were also checking the owner's permits for the animals.
The police statement said such animals "are definitely not suitable to be pets."