A hungry dolphin bit an 8-year-old girl at SeaWorld in Orlando, FL, effectively traumatizing the girl, and proving that hunger pains will bring out the beast in even the friendliest of animals. Jillian Thomas of Alpharetta, GA, had finished feeding the dolphin when she extended the paper plate to signal to her mother that she had run out of food. That's exactly what park staffers had advised guests not to do.
"I was thinking it was going to haul me into the water, and this is a little crazy, but I thought it was kind of going to eat my hand off," says the girl, who suffered mild injuries. Her father, Jamie Thomas, caught it all on camera and uploaded the video to YouTube because he "wanted to share this video so others can make an informed decision about whether or not the risks to yourself or your child are worth the experience."
Thomas says that SeaWorld was not clear about why guests should avoid raising the paper plates into the air, and showed an insufficient amount of concern after his daughter was bitten. "They did not tell us to look for any signs of infection," says her mother, Amy. " "They rinsed it out with Bactine. We had to ask for Band-Aids," she added.
SeaWorld issued a statement saying staff "connected with the family" as soon as the bite happened, and Jillian was also treated by "a member of our health services team." The family does not plan to take legal action.