Live cats placed in claw machine so people can grab them like toys

Animal lovers have bared their claws after a video of live cats placed inside a claw machine went viral online.

Purportedly filmed in an unnamed Chinese amusement cenre, the video shows a man controlling a claw machine, trying to catch the three live cats in the enclosed box.

On the machine is a notice that reads in Chinese, "Master, please bring me home."

With his hands on the joystick, the man moves the claw to above a white cat, and then he lowers it. The claw is seen grabbing the poor animal by the scruff. Startled, the cat scrambles away, and the man is heard saying, "The cat is too fat."

The video has drawn the ire of netizens, with many slamming the amusement park for being cruel in putting the cats inside the box. "The sharp claw will hurt the cats. Just looking at it scares me," said one netizen according to Shin Min Daily News.

Another angry netizen questioned: "Why must you catch live cats when you can just use stuffed toys?"

Then there are some who wondered if it was merely a marketing gimmick.

There is also a similar video circulating on Chinese social media site Weibo which shows a group of kittens trapped inside a claw machine, as a gamer attempts to catch them.

According to The Daily Mail, the video was first posted on qq.com on April 9.

pariel@sph.com.sg