TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — A rabbit bit off part of a toddler's finger after he stuck it through a fence at a leisure farm in northern Taiwan's Taoyuan City last week.
While visiting Goat World Leisure Farm (羊世界牧場) in Taoyuan's Zhongli District with his mother on Friday (Sept. 25), a one-year-old boy lost the end of his finger to a rabbit. The park expressed regret about the incident but insisted that warning signs had been posted around the enclosure and that additionally fencing has been added to prevent such incidents from recurring.
A female witness surnamed Wu (吳), who was feeding pigeons at the park with her daughter at the time, described on Facebook suddenly hearing a child scream in pain and seeing the boy standing next to the rabbit pen.
The boy's mother immediately rushed to the scene but found that he was bleeding severely from his pinky finger. Wu called for an ambulance.
Claiming to be studying nursing, Wu wrote that she had grabbed some tissue paper and applied pressure to the wound to contain the bleeding. She then went to the service desk, where staff cleaned the wound with saline and bandaged it with gauze.
The Taoyuan Fire Department said it received a report that a child had been injured at the leisure farm at 2:55 that afternoon, reported CNA. When firefighters arrived at the scene, they discovered that the tip of his finger had been severed at the first knuckle by an animal, and they immediately began applying first aid.
Chiang pointing out scene of incident. (CNA photo)
The owner of the park, Chiang Chang-li (江長利), was notified about the incident by an employee at around 3 p.m., and he claimed that he immediately called the fire department. He said he had then crawled into the pen to find the end of the child's finger but was unable to locate it.
According to Chiang, other visitors had seen the mother leave the boy in front of the enclosure and turn her back on him to buy rabbit feed with coins. He claimed that this is the first time such an accident has occurred since the park opened in 2004.
Chiang told SET News that the park has about 20 rabbits, which tourists feed through a hole in the pen.
He said the rabbits are curious by nature and will bite anything presented to them, which is why they are kept behind fencing with a sign placed nearby warning visitors they risk being bitten if they stick their fingers through the fence.
Original fencing around rabbit pen. (Goat World Leisure Farm)
The child's mother said that they had only been in the park for less than 10 minutes and was initially unaware of the attack. She said she blamed herself for not properly monitoring the toddler.
The park said it will assist the boy's family in filing for the insurance claim. The Taoyuan City Government is currently investigating the incident.
Sign warning visitors of danger of bites if they insert their fingers through fence. (Goat World Leisure Farm photo)
Enclosure where rabbits are kept. (CNA photo)