The incident occurred in Thanh Liem District’s Liem Can Commune at around 10 p.m. on March 12.
A male circus performer was making a second attempt to coax a crocodile to open its mouth and allow him to stick his head between its jaws when the animal suddenly leapt up and bit him in the face, said Cao Thuy Linh, who witnessed the performance.
The man, who was bleeding profusely from his face, was quickly taken to a local hospital for treatment.
The circus cancelled the performance immediately after the incident.
According to Pham Van Do, chairman of the commune People's Committee, the troupe's favorite crocodile died ahead of the performance, forcing them to find a quick replacement for the Saturday show.