Performing bear dressed in hat and scarf goes wild in Russian circus and attack female trainer in front of horrified children
- Shocking attack filmed at Harlequin Travelling Circus in Berezovsky, Kemerovo
- Brown bear is seen swiping at its trainer before holding onto her foot and ankle
- Russian Investigative Committee studying incident to check for safety breaches
This is the moment a performing brown bear attacked a female trainer in front of horrified children and their families at a circus in Russia.
Footage recorded by a spectator shows the wild animal – dressed in a hat and pink glittering scarf – suddenly clawing at the blonde woman during a performance in Berezovsky, in the Kemerovo region.
The bear can be seen swiping at the trainer and holding onto her foot and ankle before it is grabbed by the neck and pulled away by two male performers.
The shocking incident at the Harlequin Travelling Circus on Saturday took place just metres away from children and their parents – who had no barriers or fencing protecting them from the beast.
The video clip then shows how despite the female trainer appearing to have fallen over in pain, the bear is made to continue performing tricks with her.
The animal then makes another attack before it is pulled away yet again.
According to reports there was even a third attack, however the video shared online does not continue long enough to show it.
The woman is not believed to have sought medical treatment following the incident.
The circus is known for dressing bears in human clothes – with some wearing tutus – and ‘prides itself on humane training of the animals’.
Moment performing bear attacks a circus trainer in Russia in front of terrified children and their families
The female trainer at the Harlequin Travelling Circus is filmed struggling to release her leg from the grip of the bear during the attack on Saturday
The Russian Investigative Committee is studying Saturday’s incident to check whether there were safety breaches during the performance – particularly as there appears to be no fence or barrier protecting spectators.
The Harlequin Travelling Circus later denied there had been an attack, despite the video evidence.
A spokesman told Mash Siberia: ‘There was no incident whatsoever.
‘Simply speaking, bears are now in mating season.’
The circus promises ‘an unforgettable large-scale performance with a wide variety of animals’ to ‘surprise every city in Russia’.
Its website reads: ‘The artists present a symbiosis of training, clownery and high-class stunts in the circus ring.’
The bear was dressed in a white hat and pink glittery scarf as it was made to perform tricks before turning on its trainer
The bear was filmed attacking the trainer for a second time after being made to continue performing tricks
Two male circus performers grabbed the bear by the back of its neck to pull it away from the trainer as spectators filmed the terrifying moment
Tickets to the show were priced at 500 roubles – or £4.90.
Irina Novozhilova, of animal rights group VITA, has called for the prohibition of all circuses with live animals, which remain popular across Russia.
‘No circus conditions will be humane for one simple reason,’ she said.
‘Training goes hand in hand with cruelty… circuses are always cruel beyond limits.
‘And circuses with animals should be banned.’