10 adorable animals that are more dangerous than they look

Wikimedia CommonsThe grey wolf can be a fierce attacker, especially when in a pack.
  • Although some animals may appear harmless or even cute, they can be powerful creatures with a potentially harmful or fatal ability to attack others.
  • For example, brown bears and polar bears can be fierce attackers.
  • Tasmanian devils are also known for being quite ruthless at times.

With soft fur, pretty colours, and big eyes, many creatures can strike humans as cute and cuddly. However, some animals are more vicious than they look. Whether in acts of self-defence or seemingly unpredictable rage, some animals can fight back with strong bites, sharp claws, and sneaky attacks.

In general, you should avoid trying to touch or pet any creature in the wild if you don’t know how your presence will influence its behaviour. And you may want to be especially cautious of the creatures below.

Here are 10 cute animals that can deliver pretty powerful attacks or carry dangerous diseases, making them more dangerous than you might think.


Male platypuses have poisonous spurs.

ShutterstockPlatypus can swim.

The platypus may look harmless, but scientists have found that male platypuses can be dangerous.

The males typically have sharp spurs on the heels of their feet. These spurs contain venom with 83 venom-related genes. The genes are similar to those of other animals like snakes and spiders. Although the venom can be deadly to some creatures, it generally can’t kill humans.


Brown bears will attack when provoked.

Wikimedia CommonsBrown bears can run as fast as 30 miles per hour.

Brown bears are known for being protective of their young. According to National Geographic, they will attack if provoked. If their enormous bodies and teeth aren’t threatening enough, their speed certainly is: they can run as fast as 30 miles per hour, making them difficult to escape.


Wolves have sharp teeth.

ShutterstockGrey wolves are known to travel in packs.

With its sharp teeth, territorial howls, and an enormous appetite, the grey wolf is one of the fiercest predators in the Northern Hemisphere. According to National Geographic, A single wolf can eat up to 20 pounds of meat in one sitting. Travelling over 20 miles a day in packs of six to 10, wolves often work together to take down enormous prey like elk and moose.


Tasmanian devils can burst into fits of rage.

Wikimedia CommonsTasmanian devils’ name is no joke.

Native to Tasmania, an island state off Australia’s coast, Tasmanian Devils can burst into fits of rage. The “devil” part of these creatures’ moniker comes from the fits of rage they can burst into when threatened. Their sharp teeth and muscular jaws allow them to deliver a more powerful bite than any other mammal their size.


Poison dart frogs are — you guessed it — poisonous.

ShutterstockPoison dart frogs’ pretty colours can be deceiving.

Poison dart frogs may be small, but they’re mighty. Found primarily in the Amazon rainforest, the tiny amphibians are about the size of a paper clip and are one of the most toxic animals on earth. According to National Geographic, a single poison dart frog carries enough poison to kill 10 grown men.


Kangaroos have claws and powerful hind legs.

Paul Kane/Getty ImagesKangaroos can deliver powerful kicks.

Kangaroos may look adorable carrying joeys in their pouches, but their powerful hind legs deliver violent kicks – both to other kangaroos and, occasionally, to unfortunate humans. Native to Australia, Kangaroos can stand over 6 feet tall and they often box with one another to solve disputes.


Giant pandas have a pretty strong bite.

No matter how many adorable videos you’ve seen of pandas, don’t approach a giant panda in the wild. They have strong grips and can deliver powerful bites that are strong enough to harm a human leg.


The slow loris is venomous.

A highly threatened species, the slow loris presents a danger to those who approach it in the wild. The only known venomous primate, the slow loris may have evolved to mimic venomous snakes.

Their big eyes and soft fur make them attractive to humans, but slow lorises secrete venom from their inner arms, which then enters their mouths during grooming. Generally only used as a defence mechanism, this venom can cause rashes, illness, anaphylactic shock, or death.


Dingoes can be violent and aggressive when provoked.

Henry WhiteheadA dingo’s behaviour can be unpredictable.

Resembling a fox or a wolf, dingoes in Australia are so abundant that the animals are often considered pests. Even though the recorded number of dingo attacks remains relatively low, many Australians are wary of the unpredictable creatures, since they can become violent and aggressive if provoked, according to BBC.


Raccoons commonly carry rabies.

andamanec/ShutterstockRaccoons can transmit rabies.

Lovingly nicknamed “trash pandas,” raccoons should be taken seriously. Known for feasting on leftover human food, raccoons will generally avoid confrontation but will bite and scratch if they feel threatened. Although raccoon bites are usually minor, the creatures are one of the most common carriers of rabies, which can lead to death for those who get infected.

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