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AHA orders investigation of shark death

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American Humane Association has enlisted an independent scientific and medical expert on marine species to conduct an investigation into the unfortunate death of a shark several hours after filming a commercial in California last week.

Our mission is to ensure the safety and humane treatment of animals during production, and we can report that there was absolutely no abuse or neglect involved. Our jurisdiction is limited to protecting animal actors on the set; we do not make hiring decisions regarding animals used in production, nor does our jurisdiction include their transportation.

Our Certified Animal Safety Representative™ was on the set monitoring the humane treatment of the animal. The shark appeared to be healthy upon our arrival and during filming, which involved only the animal swimming normally in a 60,000-gallon tank and exhibiting natural behaviors. The animal was never trapped and at no point was anyone in the tank with the shark. Nothing more was required of the animal.

Later, when production was filming other scenes not involving the animal, the shark showed signs of illness. Our Certified Animal Safety Representative™ immediately insisted that the animal receive aquatic veterinary care. As an emergency medical procedure, the shark was given oxygen and a shot of adrenaline to stabilize it before transferring to an aquatic compound for further medical attention. Unfortunately, it passed away later that evening.

American Humane Association is firmly committed to our mission of protecting animals in entertainment, and we will proceed with the humane investigation led by the independent scientific expert.

If you have questions or concerns about this incident, please email us at

Press Inquiries: Please contact Jody Frisch at or Mark Stubis at

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