Orlando, Florida - A thrilling time feeding bottle nosed dolphins at Seaworld in Orlando. Turned frightening with this moment when one of the mammals bit 8-year-old Jillian Thomas on November 21st.
In this video shot by her father, you can see the three dime sized puncture wounds on Jillian's hand.
"I was thinking it was going to haul me into the water. And this is a little crazy but I thought it was kinda going to eat my hand off. "
Can't watch the video? Click here for photos
The dolphin bit after Jillian moved a paper plate that held the fish she was feeding them.
"When I was done I accidentally held it up, the dolphin jumped up and ate the carton and bit my hand. They told us to make sure the paper plate stays on the wall, but we really didn't know why. And there was no disclaimer, there were no signs on the wall that says hey the dolphin could bite your hand or there is a level of risk in this attraction."
Jillian's hand is now pretty much healed, but the scary event will last her lifetime, and maybe longer on Youtube. Her father posted this video to warn other parents.
"We really felt powerless. So we thought we got this video let's make it public and let's try to put some pressure on SeaWorld to make some changes."
Jillian's parents say Seaworld responded clumsily, not even sending over a manager.
"They did not tell us to look out for any signs of infection, they rinsed it out with Bactine, we had to ask for bandaids.
Seaworld says it is taking this incident seriously and released a statement saying quote nothing is more important to us than the health and safety of our guests, employees and animals.
SeaWorld also said that educators and animal care staff are always on-site at this area, monitoring all interactions.
It adds that the park's health services employees quickly responded and treated the girl.
The family said it does not plan to take any legal action, but wants SeaWorld to raise the age limit or warn parents that dolphins can and do bite.
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