Kangaroos jump away from a cart carrying Britain's Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall. Reuters/Mark Graham

A man has been filmed punching a kangaroo to save his dog. In the viral video, the man saw his dog being head-locked by a large kangaroo. However, he received mixed commentaries in the social media debating whether his intervention was necessary.

Marco Festa-Bianchet, a National Geographic explorer who studies kangaroos, said that the man was very lucky because he could have been killed. He said that kangaroos don't punch each other. Instead, they use their legs to beat their opponent. They also use their tail to balance their body before kicking using their back legs. There are times when they claw their opponent's eyes out. If any of the scenarios happened, the man would be seriously injured.

Festa-Bianchet said that the man was hyped up in the situation and he had to make a decision as he felt threatened by the animal. Although there was a sign that the kangaroo would wrestle the dog, it was not yet clear what triggered the situation.

Tonkins worked as a zookeeper staff at the Taronga Western Plains Zoo. The zoo confirmed in a statement that his employment was not in jeopardy. It even commended his compliance in practicing the best approach to animal care. However, the zoo still investigates the incident.

The zoo also noted that Taronga observed the highest standards of animal welfare and animal care which is the zoo's core value. It emphasised that it expected its staff to uphold the core value in all their interactions with wildlife.

Tonkins was on a hunting trip that was put together for a friend, who later passed away from cancer.

“Basically Kailem wanted to catch a boar … so a few of us got together to take him out, and another mate filmed more than an hour of video to put together as a DVD for Kailem and his family of the trip,” Tonkins told News.com.au, referring to his friend.