WATCH: Tourist Tries to Pet Wild Warthog, Immediately Gets Trampled

by Amy Myers

In this edition of “What Animals Not to Pet,” we’re adding wild warthogs to the list. But these tourists already discovered that on their own.

Despite what Disney may make it seem, warthogs are not approachable (and they definitely don’t travel with meercat companions). Their tails are always wagging, but don’t mistake this for the friendly gesture we often see from dogs. This is only to keep the bugs away. While they may be fairly small in stature, warthogs are incredibly powerful creatures that can reach speeds up to 30 miles per hour, and their tusks can grow up to 10 inches in length.

Typically, warthogs have no reason to interact with humans. Unlike other horned and tusked creatures, these African-native animals won’t approach people unless it is absolutely necessary. But when you try and call the animal over to pet it, well, it may trigger its fight-or-flight response.

Take these tourists, for instance. They decided to find out first-hand if a warthog will charge them or roll on its belly for pets.

Guess which outcome they got.

To the unsuspecting viewer, the video seems to start out calmly enough. The admittedly adorable warthog waddles up with its tail swishing, looking like it just stepped out of the “Hakuna Matata” scene of Lion King. Once the animal reaches the foolish tourists, though, the tusked creature took charge – literally – knocking the tourist on his back with one blow.

Not surprisingly, the tourist then cried out for help, and the warthog probably carried on its merry way.

What to Do When You See a Warthog

For wildlife enthusiasts, this video is almost unwatchable because of the number of mistakes that the tourists made within a few short seconds. But for the sake of future warthog run-ins, here’s a breakdown of what to do if you see one.

  1. Keep your distance. The moment that these tourists saw the animal, they should have left the area. And from the vantage point they had in the video, they had plenty of time to do so calmly.
  2. Don’t encourage the animal to approach. The number one mistake these tourists made was making themselves known to the warthog. By doing so, they labeled themselves either as prey or a predator, and both will get the brunt end of their tusks. Instead, the best course of action is to move slowly away from the area to safety.
  3. Use common sense. Warthogs really won’t come close to you unless you provoke them. Respect that they are wild animals and don’t put yourself in a situation in which you don’t know the outcome.

Too bad those tourists didn’t have this list before their encounter.