Shark dies after lifeguards & tourists drag it out of sea for photos (VIDEO, PHOTOS)

© Gary Stokes
Horrifying footage has emerged of a shark dying after Dominican Republic lifeguards and beachgoers pulled it out of the water in order to take photos with the distressed creature.

The incident is the latest from a disturbing trend of people treating animals as props for holiday snaps.

A video of the incident, which took place on the beaches of Punta Cana in the Dominican Republic, shows a group of men, including lifeguards from the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino, run into shallow water with ropes and a small fishing net to capture the blue shark.

They then tie it up on the beach, placing a life buoy around its head and mouth.

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Photos later emerged on social media of the men posing with the dead creature, two of which include a team of lifeguards. One even shows some small children happily posing alongside the lifeless shark.

Hard Rock Hotel spokesperson Stacy Sorino told The Dodo that the employees involved will be subject to “corrective measures.”

“That is absolutely against our standards of protecting animals as we protect our guests,” she said

Many people contacted the hotel group on Twitter to register their disgust with the employees’ actions. The hotel reiterated that they do not condone the behavior and will sanction staff appropriately.

Animal rights groups have condemned the continuing trend of removing animals from their natural habitats just for the sake of social media profiles, and have asked people to refrain from such behavior – which can be dangerous for humans as well as animals.

This latest incident follows on a similar situation that made news headlines in February of this year, when a group of tourists removed a rare La Plata dolphin from the sea off the coast of Argentina to take “selfies.” They then left the poor mammal for dead, sparking outrage on social media around the world.

READ MORE:Twitter condemns ‘selfish & brain dead’ selfie posers after death of baby dolphin (VIDEO)