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Published On: Mon, Dec 3rd, 2012

Jillian Thomas, Georgia girl, breaks Sea World rules feeding dolphins, gets bit on hand

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 – Dolphin Cove, when she was bitten when she held up the paper fish container to where the dolphin could grab it.

screenshot video

This is something SeaWorld warns guests not to do repeatedly during the feeding/interaction experience.

The Global Dispatch confirmed with sources at Sea World that the paper containers pose a threat to the animals, but they are attacted to them. “The guests are instructed to hold the herring with an outstretched arm,” sources told the Dispatch.

Below is the video made available by the Jillian’s parents, who admit their daughter broke the rules amidst the excitement.

Jillian suffered three puncture wounds on her hand.

The girl still loves dolphins, talks about being a dolphin trainer and even prayer for the dolphin, concerned about it eating the paper tray.

SeaWorld offered this statement:

“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.”

 

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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About the Author

- Writer and Co-Founder of The Global Dispatch, Brandon has been covering news, offering commentary for years, beginning professionally in 2003 on Crazed Fanboy before expanding into other blogs and sites. Appearing on several radio shows, Brandon has hosted Dispatch Radio, written his first novel (The Rise of the Templar) and completed the three years Global University program in Ministerial Studies to be a pastor. To Contact Brandon email [email protected] ATTN: BRANDON

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  1. Ray says:

    Lying parents: “We’re not going to show anyone”….EXCEPT THE WHOLE WORLD!!!!!!

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