Girl bitten while feeding dolphin at SeaWorld
ALPHARETTA, Ga. The family of an 8-year-old Georgia girl said she suffered minor injuries after a dolphin bit her hand at SeaWorld in Orlando, Fla.
Jillian Thomas of Alpharetta was feeding fish to the dolphin as part of a SeaWorld attraction and was bitten when she held up the paper fish container to where the dolphin could grab it. That's something SeaWorld warns guests not to do.
Jillian told an Atlanta TV station she feared the dolphin would "eat my hand off."
Instead she suffered three small punctures.
Her father, Jamie Thomas, has posted video of the Nov. 21 incident on YouTube, to show other parents that feeding dolphins can be risky.
The girl's mother told CBS Affiliate WGCL that she wants other parents to hear their story so other children don't get hurt.
Despite her scary experience, Jillian told WSB-TV that she still loves dolphins, and wants to be a dolphin trainer when she grows up.
Her family told CBS Station WKMG in Orlando that the family says it's more concerned about Jillian's emotional well-being. Her parents say the 8-year-old was depressed for a few days after the incident. She even prayed for the dolphin, which she thought would get sick from eating the paper tray.
SeaWorld says it hasn't reviewed the video but is committed to the safety of its guests.
In a statement to WKMG SeaWorld said, "Nothing is more important to us than the health and safety of our guests, employees and animals. Educators and animal care staff are always on-site at this area, monitoring all interactions and are committed to guest safety."
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