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Rampaging leopard mauls woman at circus as she protects 4 year old son from attack

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21 December 2016


Moments earlier, the leopard called Loki had been taken out of the arena by its woman tamer after appearing 'aggressive'. Picture: Danil Kolosov

The woman struggled to protect her friend's son Tim (Timofey), her godson, who she had taken to see the travelling circus show in Bogotol, Krasnoyarsk region.

Moments earlier, the leopard called Loki had been taken out of the arena by its woman tamer after appearing 'aggressive'. When it came back, it immediately rushed towards the boy and his godmother. 

'Suddenly he jumped in front of my nose, I only had time to cover Tim,' said Lyubov, who saved the child from a possibly fatal attack. The beast grabbed me with its teeth, and began to tear me up. I shrinked. What happened next, I don't remember except like everyone else we rushed for the door.'

Lyubov Yakovleva

Lyubov Yakovleva, 53, struggled to protect her friend's son Tim (Timofey), her godson. Picture: The Siberian Times

Circus staff had pulled the leopard away from the woman and boy, and were also wounded. A police car then rushed her to hospital. 'I felt weak and nauseous,' she said. 

The boy's mother Oksana Uskova was also with them, and said: 'Doctors put in 10 stitches and  her tendon was bitten all the way through, not to mention the stress and consequences in the future... There was no safety, no fencing. We sat in the 6th row, but the animal was there in three seconds. This fear and horror still is in my eyes.'

She added: 'No one helped us. We went outside, and were waiting for the ambulance there. But it took so long the traffic police gave us a lift to the hospital. As we got to their car, she [Lyubov] fainted. She lost a lot of blood. There was blood everywhere. '

Oksana Uskova with her son Tim


Oksana Uskova with her son Timofey pictured in 2014 in Bogotol. Pictures: The Siberian Times

Later Lyubov said: 'Thank God that I'm 53, and could protect my little godson. 

'Almost half of the spectators were kids without parents. To the right from me was a little boy, I asked him - 'Why you are alone?' He said: 'My father had no money for his ticket, and he is waiting for me outside. If the animal had attacked him, who would have protected the child?  

'I'm in hospital now, my hand doesn't move properly. And doctors do not give any forecasts.' She vowed to sue the circus, demanding 250,000 roubles ($4,100) plus medical expenses. 




 Leopard Loki pictured as it takes part in the show of the travelling circus Aurora. Pictures: Circus Aurora, Danil Kolosov, Natalia Norvatova

'They told me: 'Do you want to destroy us with this?' I responded: 'Do you think I want to be in hospital because of your negligence?' I don't care about the compensation, I want to stop this lawlessness.'

She added: 'I do not blame the animal - no way. I blame only the organisers. I was worried about the leopard, and asked the circus staff, how it is. They told all is OK, it is in cage now.' 

Comments (8)

Send those beautiful animals to some great park rescue,where they walk on green grass

not concrete 23 1/2 hours a day,where they suffer extreme abuse for the pleasure of the tamer
sadistic man that beat them half to death.
Barbara., Florida.U.S.A.
24/12/2016 19:09
The leopard should have never been apart of that circus! Wild animals are unpredictable, they should be put in such a situation! The people who own and run that circus were completely neglectful and they should have their license taken away and shut down!!!
Carol Dorn, Beaver, U.S.A
24/12/2016 03:04
This is obvious criminal negligence by the circus. Circuses are supposed to have a net or something around the arena, when there are performances with dangerous animals, to protect the audience. I believe this is the law in Russia. I have been to circuses in Moscow as a child, the Durov Circus, the Tsvetnoy Bulvar Circus, they all had this. Of course, those are legendary Moscow circuses, not some small provincial show... But still... Law is law. Hold them to account.
Sergei, Richmond, Canada
23/12/2016 08:55
There is a perfect solution to these types of incidents. Stop beating wild animals in to submission, forcing them to perform in totally unnatural surroundings. Boycott animal entertainment of all types. Circuses, marine parks, elephant rides. Enough is eniugh.
Aislinn, London
22/12/2016 13:53
Barb colvin, United states
22/12/2016 11:07

The Big Cats are crammed into tiny cages most of their day! At 'showtime' they are forced to preform unnatural acts to make a profit, for the sake of 'entertainment'! Every few days,they are crammed into trucks and spend countless hours traveling to the next destination where they start the cycle all over again. Elephants are stabbed with bull hooks, inside their mouths, to keep them in line. Cattle prods are used on Camels. When you support willingly support neglect/pain/abuse! It's outdated..we know this now...and we are Better than this! Choose Kindness
Sheila R., U.S.A.
22/12/2016 11:05
Don't support animal circuses. These animals are bored,unhappy and scared. Look at his eyes.He's gone mad. Be humane and boycott.
Moira young, Uk
22/12/2016 02:30
The leopard should be freed from the circus and released to a good sanctuary immediatly. The sooner idiots like this circus learn that no animal a part from humans should perform in circus the sooner this accidents will stop
Uberto Monaldo , United Kingdom
22/12/2016 02:18

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