Taj is a 370lb Golden Bengal Tiger in Cougar Mountain Zoo in Issaquah, Washington (the state). One day a little baby girl approached his cage, placing her hands out in amazement on the glass separating the two. Instead of simply ignoring the girl or snarling at her, Taj did something special. This is how photographer Dyrk Daniels describes it:
I noticed this little girl was leaning against the glass with both hands out stretched staring at the ‘big kitties’ I noticed that Taj had taken an interest in the girl and was heading towards her. I thought for certain that the little girl would need therapy after the encounter and fear cats for the rest of her life. I could not believe my eyes when Taj approached the girl, bowed his head and then placed his huge right paw exactly in front of where the little girl’s left hand was. It was incredible to watch. Taj let down his right paw, rubbed his cheek against the glass where the little girl’s face was and moved off. I have never seen such tenderness from such a large predator.
To top it off, the little girl was not even scared, reportedly clapping in joy as she walked back to her mother.
The following are photos of the encounter; check it out: