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    Lyin' den? China zoo replaces big cat with big dog

    8:23 AM, Aug 16, 2013   |    comments
    Attendees gather at a stage where Tibetan mastiff dogs are displayed for sale at a mastiff show in Baoding, Hebei province, south of Beijing on March 9, 2013. Fetching prices around $750,000 USD, mastiffs have become a prized status-symbol amongst China's wealthy. AFP PHOTO / Ed Jones
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    BEIJING (AP) - Behold the regal lion and hear its mighty ... bark?

    Reports say a zoo in the central China city of Luohe attempted to pass off a Tibetan mastiff as a lion. The large breed's trademark mane gives it a lion-like appearance, but its vocalizations are far closer to a woof than a roar.

    The Beijing Youth Daily said Friday the zoo also had a dog in the wolf cage, foxes in the leopard enclosure and nutrias in the snake den.

    The paper quoted zoo manager Liu Suya as denying any attempt at deception, saying the lion had been lent out for breeding. Liu said the same was true for the leopard, while the snake and wolf were merely sheltering from the torrid summer heat.

    Calls to the zoo rang unanswered.

    (Source: The photo attached is an example of a Tibetan mastiff and not the one used at the zoo.)

    (Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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