American Tourists View Shocking Lion Attack at Circus

Posted Oct 5th 2010 11:27 AMUpdated Oct 5th 2010 01:22 PM

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An American family traveling in the Ukraine went to the circus and ended up watching in horror as lions attacked their trainer in front of a crowd.

The family's video of the attack, which occurred in the city of Lviv, was broadcast on "The Early Show" on CBS.

Circus lion tamer Oleksie Pinko is shown on the video trying to keep a lion a safe distance with a rod. But the animal roars, and lunges and strikes. And another lion joins in.

Doug Shepherd, who had brought his two kids to the circus, tells CBS News, "Kids are screaming, and kids are only 10 feet away and (my family was) probably 35 feet away."

His wife, Masha Shepherd, says she grabbed her daughter and started to run, because she thought the lions would leave the ring. In the video only a mesh net appears to protect the circus audience from the animals.



The trainer was bit on his arm and knocked to the ground. He was taken by ambulance to a local hospital for emergency surgery, and was in stable condition, CBS reports.

This attack follows another recent incident where a lion went after its trainer at the MGM Grand Hotel in Las Vegas, an incident also caught on video.

Doug Shepherd says he has seen "great performances" at the traditional circus on past visits, but that he may have a hard time convincing his family to go again.

Interestingly, the city of Lviv happens to be nicknamed "City of Lions" – named for a "Leo" and with the city symbol a lion.

Filed Under: News

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Leon

Did anyone notice that the lion on the far end of the ring was suffering from cowardly-lion syndrome as he was just sitting there on his stool, with his back to the fight, trying desperately not see what was going on and just as desperately not to be seen?

October 05 2010 at 7:26 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Leon's comment
Casey

Psychologically and physically tortured until he was a cowardly lion.

July 16 2013 at 1:19 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
I my I my I my I my

Che credine. Disgraziate. No respect. Penned up in a tiny little spec of gravity. Pride and arrogance strikes again. So sad. They were just playing and those people don't understand this. They must be trying to catch up with civilization: clueless. They deserved it for being blind. Animal cruelty-thats what. How dare they.

October 05 2010 at 6:51 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
ashley

good, thats what they get. these animals are not meant to be poked around and toyed with for people's entertainment. i almost wish he would have gotten a bigger bite of him.

October 05 2010 at 6:46 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
I my I my I my I my

Hey. Cruel and senseless.

October 05 2010 at 6:44 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Deadeye

I'm only here to say this. What kinda lowlife continues to tape somin like this?? I won't watch it. These people thought they'd make a ton of money probably. Low life's !!!

October 05 2010 at 6:37 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
April

Good. Circuses are cruel to animals. Exotic animals should not be crammed ito tiny cages and traveling around almost constantly. And circur trainers use several questionable methods of negative reinforcemnet in order to get the animals to behave. Sounds like one animal finally had enough.
Anyone who supports circuses containing animals is also supporting a lifetime of abuse and cruelty for the animals.
A wild animal can NEVER be completely trained, even if raised from birth. These idiots should have realized what they were getting themselves into. Maybe now they'll think twice before trying to manipulate a wild animal.

October 05 2010 at 6:36 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
jason

I REALLY LOVE WHEN THESE POOR ANIMALS THAT ARE PICKED ON AND ABUSED TO ENTERTAIN IDIOTS SNAP AND ATTACK THERE TRAINERS AND PAUL I HOPE WHILE YOUR IN AFRICA YOUR CAPTURED AND COOKED

October 05 2010 at 6:36 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
cristine

Circuses should be shut down...this is inhumane treatment of animals. Period! They just want to live in peace, like we do.

October 05 2010 at 6:31 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
jdymes101

well, i reckon i would do the same thing if someone was poking at me like that.

October 05 2010 at 6:08 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
circushater

it soooooooo warms my heart every time i see a confined wild animal atack it's "caretaker". these circuses have no business existing, esp with animals. humans who keep or interact with wild animals deserve evrything coming to them

October 05 2010 at 5:57 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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