A circus bear being forced to do ‘tricks’ on stage lashed out at the handler but carried on performing after being hit with a big stick.
In shocking video footage – and I mean shocking to see a bear being forced to perform – you can see the animal lose its patience and seemingly launch itself at the circus handler.
The video was taken as the poor animal was paraded in front of the audience in the city of Syktyvkar, the capital of the Komi Republic, Russia.
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The bear was mid-trick when it attacked the trainer, prompting loud gasps from the audience.
An assistant appears and beats the poor bear with a long stick, which forces it to retreat backwards before carrying on with its performance.
The handler then jumps back to his feet and continues offering treats to the bear and the show continues.
The heart-stopping scene raises questions about the use of wild animals as performing circus animals – to which the answer really is an obvious and clear ‘no’.
Animals should be allowed to be animals and not forced to perform and if you have to use a stick to frighten them into performing, well, there’s your answer.
The Melanzh circus troop, from Perm in the Urals, claimed that the handler was not hurt.
Circus representative Oleg told Komsomolskaya Pravda newspaper:
The handler and the bear lost their understanding for a moment.
It can happen any time. Similar cases happen with dogs, but we didn’t make a fuss about it.
Everyone present at the show could see that no-one got injured. And the handler stood on his knees in front of the bear and hugged him.
Last month, a video was captured by an onlooker as shocked members of the audience looked on in horror as a Siberian tiger bit into his trainer and dragged him around the cage.
The clip, which has been viewed over a million times on social media, shows the circus tiger suddenly turning on his handler with no warning.
As the clip is recording you can hear shouts of ‘hurry!’ and ‘my God!’ as the trainer’s fellow tiger tamers rush to his aid.
The recorded clips show the tamers trying to get the tiger away from his prey using a long stick.
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However the attempt is futile as the large cat refuses to let go of his trainer and continues to drag him around the confines of the cage.
The clip cuts as soon as the other trainers rush in to free the man from the Siberian tiger’s jaws.
There have been no further reports on the condition of the trainer as yet.
People who viewed the video on Chinese social media were quick to call an end to circus animal performances, with many asking officials to enforce a ban on these cruel segments.
According to The Mirror, one person commented:
Animals need freedom. You’ve restricted its freedom. There is no resistance without oppression.