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Dad Hired A Dinosaur To Show Up To His 5-Year-Old Son's Birthday Party — And It Did Not Go Well

Photo: @dadpack/Instagram
Screenshots from video of dinosaur terrorizing kids at the birthday party

Almost every kid goes through a phase where all they can think and talk about is dinosaurs — the giant lizards are undeniably fascinating, after all.

So what could be more exciting for a kid's fifth birthday party than a dinosaur paying a visit for some cake and ice cream, right? Now that's a party!

But for one dad who decided to go this route for his son's big day, the whole thing became a Jurassic Park-level backfire.

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To paraphrase Jeff Goldblum in the iconic film, it seems the dad was so excited that he could have a dinosaur at his kid's party that he didn't stop to think whether he should.

The dino that showed up was more monster than cute and cuddly Barney, and the kids ... well, they kinda panicked!

A dad hired a guy in a hyper-realistic T-Rex dinosaur costume for his son's birthday party, and it terrified the kids.

When the T-Rex first comes through the door, it's hard not to feel a sense of wonder at how realistic he looks. 

And then you remember that we're dealing with five-year-olds here, who don't exactly have a firm grip on what is and is not reality. 

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The T-Rex is enormous and towers over even the parents in the room, and it seems to send the kids into an instant panic.

Before the dinosaur even makes it through the door of the room where the party is being held, the kids are already shrieking and running away.

And it's easy to see why once the dinosaur gets close to the camera that's filming him — he looms way overhead and his open jaw full of teeth gapes so wide it only makes him seem even more enormous.

Presumably, some of these kids are shrieking in delight and getting caught up in the realistic magic of it all. 

One youngster close to the camera who appears to only be a toddler seems totally awestruck by the spectacle, all full of adorable child-like wonder.

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But other kids seem genuinely terrified, barricading themselves into a bouncy house to get away from the T-Rex.

The T-Rex tears through the room giving chase to the kids at the party, but most of them seem to be running more out of fear than fun.

One kid dives into what appears to be a pile of play mats to escape the dino, while another group recoils into the corner of a bouncy house, shrieking as the T-Rex tries to get inside. 

It's hard not to chuckle at the pandemonium that ensues — it's absolute bedlam at this party — but not everyone was amused by the video.

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Many commenters felt the dinosaur stunt was a huge mistake that traumatized the kids at the birthday party.

One Instagram user railed against the dad who hired the dino, writing, "WTF was he thinking that this was a good idea! Now most are traumatized! Not cool!"

"Terrifying children is not funny," another one wrote.

Others called out the person in the dinosaur costume for continuing to chase the kids despite how scared they were.

"That dude in the costume knew exactly what he was doing trapping those kids in the bounce house," one person commented.

"Now the parents just lost all the trust from their kids," another commenter lamented.

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Others found the idea of kids being traumatized by a birthday party dinosaur ridiculous.

"Traumatized????? The joys of living in the first world," one commenter sniped.

"The real world gonna do worse," another wrote, adding that the stunt was "great parenting."

"My parents pranked us as kids and we laugh about it when we’re older. Never was traumatized. If anything it taught me to not be so serious and soft," another user said.

One user felt that "you can't protect kids from certain emotions forever," and went on to claim the experience taught the kids at the party a valuable lesson.

"Now they know how to run and look for a safe place to hide in dangerous-looking situations."

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But experts agree that experiences like this can be legitimately frightening for children, and they can have lasting effects.

This debate has come up time and time again, especially around Halloween, when many parents posted videos to social media in which they scared their kids for the holiday.

When one such video went viral last October, TikToker "@h_e_z_y_helps," a licensed therapist who mainly works with traumatized children, spoke out to inform parents about the impact being frightened can have on a child.

"If you are questioning that this is not traumatizing, let’s go over the definition of trauma," she said at the time.

"Trauma is literally any stressful or terrifying event that is overwhelming, unpredictable, and prolonged" — a definition that certainly fits this T-Rex birthday party incident.

"Intentionally traumatizing your children should not be considered a harmless 'funny' trend," she went on to say.

So before you order your kid a dinosaur for their party, maybe let the dino know he should be more Barney than T-Rex.

Better to give your kids happy memories than lifelong nightmare fuel!

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John Sundholm is a news and entertainment writer who covers pop culture, social justice and human interest topics.