London - Viewers of the Animal Planet cable and satellite channel have voted the tiger the world's favourite animal, narrowly beating the dog, according to a poll published on its website, www.animalplanet.co.uk on Monday.
More than 50 000 viewers from 73 countries voted in the poll, tigers receiving 10 904 votes, just 17 votes more than dogs.
Animal behaviourist Candy d'Sa, who worked with Animal Planet on the list, said: "We can relate to the tiger, as it is fierce and commanding on the outside, but noble and discerning on the inside.
"In contrast, the dog is a loyal and respectful creature and brings out the lighter, more communicative side of human nature," she said.
Callum Rankine, international species officer at the World Wildlife Federation conservation charity, said the result gave him hope.