MIAMI - A teenage model says she was on a family vacation in the Bahamas when a shark bit her on the arm.
Instagram model Katarina Elle Zarutskie’s boyfriend’s father was taking photos in June when she was surrounded by sharks and a 5-foot nurse shark took a bite and pulled her under, according to NBC News.
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"I was leaning back for probably no more than 10 seconds, and this shark just grabbed my wrist. I know he mistook me,” Zarutskie, who attends University of Miami, told KTRK. “It was an accident and he probably thought I was food, and I am very lucky that I was able to rip my arm away from him.”
Zarutskie, who grew up surfing in Southern California, remained calm and freed herself from the shark’s jaws, according to WPLG.
"These animals are considered quite docile but can and do bite on occasion," David Hocher, who owns Staniel Cay, wrote in an email to NBC News. "Normally when they mistake a hand or fingers for a piece of food."
Zarutskie is recovering. Doctors told her that she still has teeth fragments in her arm, according to WPLG.
"You really need to respect them in their home, and if you do go swim with them, I think if you have the opportunity, you do have to take into consideration the risks, and also just maybe not lean back," Zarutskie told WPLG.
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