Dolphin attacks trainer before dragging them underwater in front of horrified kids at aquarium
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Featured Image Credit: WPLG Local 10/YouTube
A dolphin shocked an audience at an aquarium in Miami, Florida, after it attacked their trainer and tried dragging her underwater in front of a crowd.
Dolphins have got a bit of a reputation as friendly denizens of the deep who have sometimes helped humans stranded at sea towards the nearest bit of land.
They're also smart enough to hunt for mines in the ocean for the US military, but perhaps one of them would even be able to serve in a more combat-heavy role considering how it got violent with a trainer.
Last year at the Miami Seaquarium a dolphin called Sundance tried to drag their trainer underwater and attacked them.
The trainer was taken to hospital in an ambulance, though fortunately did not suffer serious injuries in the dolphin-instigated bout of aquatic violence.
Footage of the attack was taken by Shannon Carpenter, who explained that while 'kids were cheering and thinking this was neat' not everybody was oblivious to the attack as 'the adults knew something was wrong'.
The Miami Seaquarium released a statement afterwards saying that the trainer had accidentally scratched the dolphin.
They said: "A dolphin and trainer accidentally collided in the water on Saturday while performing a routine behavior as part of the Flipper Show.
"This was an uncomfortable interaction for both of them and the dolphin reacted by breaking away from the routine and striking the trainer."
However, a former park employee and veterinarian Jenna Wallace said the dolphin had been violent in the past, meaning last year's attack would not have been an isolated incident.
She said: "I have been told by previous veterinarians and staff that this animal had rammed another trainer in the abdomen.
"When dolphins become aggressive like this, there's always some underlying thing."
PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) slammed the Seaquarium over the incident, with General Counsel Jared Goodman releasing a statement demanding that the dolphins be relocated to sanctuaries.
They said: "Time is up for the Miami Seaquarium, where long-suffering dolphins desperately need protection and workers are at risk.
"PETA urges this abusement park to end its exploitation of dolphins by getting them to sanctuaries as quickly as possible so that they'd never be used in tawdry shows again and no one else would get hurt."
Miami Seaquarium had previously been found to have committed many animal welfare violations after a report by the US Department of Agriculture.
That document claimed the park was feeding rotten fish to animals, habitats falling into disrepair, and animals being inadequately cared for.
It also noted that some dolphins at the park had died.
The park is also home to Lolita, an orca who has been working for 52 years and has become the subject of a campaign to release her from the orca tank – the smallest in the world – to a sea sanctuary on the Pacific Northwest.
UNILAD has contacted Miami Seaquarium for comment.
Topics: News, US News, Animals, Animal Cruelty