Zookeepers cuddle lonely tigers as Covid-19 kills tourism in Thailand

This is the heartwarming moment lonely tigers received hugs and cuddles from zookeepers after Covid-19 decimated tourism in Thailand.

Footage shows the loving staff interacting with the animals at the Tiger Kingdom in Chiang Mai province on January 5.

Since the coronavirus travel ban was put in place last March, the tigers have had less human contact as fewer people had been visiting the zoo.

So to keep the big cats happy, tiger-keepers took them out to have showers, scrub them, brush their fur, and cuddle with them.

Zoo manager Pirom Jantama said: ‘A lot of these tigers are lonely due to the lack of tourists, if there are no tiger-keepers around, some of them start to cry and feel sad.’

More than 50 tigers are living in the zoo with different breeds including Bengal, Siberian, and Cheetahs ranging from seven months to seven-years-old.

Some of the popular tigers at the zoo are Buay, Bank, Chetar, Nammon and Namo, all of which receive regular cuddles from their keepers.