What's more charming than a child and an animal sharing a pleasant moment? Very little, friends, very little. From pictures of a puppy and a pint-sized person eating the same ice cream cone to videos of kittens crawling over newborn humans, the Interwebs are flush with adorable scenes of cute kids and animals getting along famously. Now, what's less charming than a child and an animal sharing a pleasant moment? How about seeing a kid get owned by an animal instead. (While not often as adorable, these moments are often pretty damn funny, at least.)
Woe to the person who forgets that, under the right circumstances, all animals can be capricious, violent, and sometimes just kind of jerks. We treat them as unintelligent at our peril, and as easily predictable at risk to our own wellbeing (or at least to our sense of pride). And in the days of the smartphone camera, it's a safe bet that every time an animal breaks out of its normal docile, cuddly, or steadfast character, there's going to be video or photo evidence of the aftermath. Let's take a look at a few times that a camera meant to capture a Halcyon moment instead captured kids getting owned by animals.
15 Sea Lion Snatches Girl
People around the globe watched in horror as in May of 2017 a young girl was snatched off of a pier and dragged down into the water by a California sea lion. Though the animal only sunk his teeth into the girl's dress, and while she was quickly rescued by the combined efforts of a heroic older relative who dove into the water as well as by others on the dock, the situation was still harrowing for how different the outcome might have been. Had the animal's sharp teeth found flesh and/or held her below the water, the result might have been a true tragedy, instead of a GIF you watch on repeat with your mouth slightly agape.
14 Slap a Cat, Get Slapped Back
There's a lesson all of us need to learn at some point in our lives, and it's one that, unfortunately, can only truly be learned firsthand. That lesson is this: cats are kind of dicks. You only think you know this until you have had a cat attack your face; then there's no doubt left. This toddler learns the truth about cats the hard way, but at least he had it coming. If you slap a house cat, you instantly create a temporary tiger. And tigers tend to pounce, as I recall from Calvin and Hobbes.
13 The Kangaroo Kick
I'm not 100% sure what the adult in this situation was thinking as he allowed a small child to run toward a kangaroo, but it's quite clear what the kangaroo was feeling. It would probably translate to something like this: "Hey, small human, don't charge me, because KICK IN THE FACE!" Just because an animal is in a petting zoo doesn't mean it's a good idea to bum rush it, especially if you're all of about two and a half feet tall. This kid learned the hard way that you don't mess with marsupials.
12 Camel Asserts His Dominance
A trip through a safari park is lots of fun... until you have a camel's face in your face, and your wrist nibbled by camel teeth. These kids will probably think twice before they pop up out of the sunroof again, especially when they drive into lion territory. The question remains why they waited until the camel was all of six inches away to retreat into the vehicle, but it's probably because kids tend to lack common sense and experience with aggressive camels. These are things we learn as we grow, and sometimes it takes a close encounter with a large mammal for the lesson to really sink in.
11 Flying Cat Attack
When you see this kid spinning a cat toy around in circles under the close, watchful eye of a cat, it doesn't take a huge mental leap to conclude he is probably about to get jumped by a cat. What you don't expect is said jump attack to come from a feline flying in from 2 o'clock high, all four paws extended in full attack mode as the other cat calmly bides its time. Surely the child was fine, but surely he'll also think twice about what constitutes playing versus baiting next time. If there ever is a next time, that is.
10 A Spiteful Beluga
When a rambunctious dog knocks a kid over while playing fetch, you can write it off as an accident. When a cat springs at a child who's waving a toy around, you can chalk that up to instinct. When a beluga whale takes a good hard look at a child and then proceeds to spit water over the side of the tank onto the boy, that there is an owning, through and through. This beluga clearly premeditates his spraying attack, and then even seems to sit back and revel in his victory as the child stumbles away in confusion.
9 Double Punch Goat
Depending on how you look at life, the great thing or the terrible thing about this video is the fact that the goat doesn't settle simply for knocking this child over, but then goes in for a second blow, which comes closer to knocking the kid out. (I'm sure the child was not actually knocked unconscious; don't worry.) This is yet another example of two different species doing what they do. Goats headbutt, that's what they do. People awkwardly fall over and then make no attempt to defend ourselves, that's pretty much what we do. (Fight or Flight or Not-So-Much, e.g.)
8 Horse Gets Revenge
There's almost nothing more satisfying than immediate justice, which is also known as instant karma in the land of the web. And man oh man, is justice/karma what this little girl gets. She pushes a horse for no good reason, and the horse in turn grabs her by the hair and tosses her on her ass for a very good reason. It's a perfect animal owning moment: you can tell the youngster is surely fine, just shaken up, and thus you can revel in the smackdown delivered to her after she needlessly spites it. Way to go, Mr. Ed.
7 Canine Clothesline
Here we see two dogs pull off a near perfect clothesline strike on this hapless baby. The canine attackers surely had no intention of knocking the kid over, but they nonetheless could scarcely have executed a more flawless maneuver. In fact, one has to wonder if they even knew the kid was there as they struggled over that strip of fabric, but the results are still the same: kid gets owned, kid goes down. The dogs just keep on cruising, and the human behind the camera hardly loses the framing. Now that's what we call teamwork.
6 Dog Triple Strike
You can attribute this one to pure dumb luck (or bad luck) if you want, but to me it looks more like a case of a cold killer at work. This dog makes three trips around the family dining room table and goes 3 - 0 knocking over children. Each loop takes out another one of the hapless youngsters; it could hardly have been planned better by a human strike team. Though to be fair, it helps that the toddling people the dog "knocks over" fall to the floor at the slightest touch. (Kids will fall over at pretty much any time for any reason or for no reason at all, in fact.)
5 Gorilla Has Had Enough
You know how annoying it can be when a kid is mouthing off or whining in a grocery store/subway train/checkout line/pretty much anywhere you take them? Don't you sometimes want to just snap and yell "Hey, enough goddammit!" Well, when you're a gorilla, the same societal conventions don't apply, and you can go right ahead and do (the gorilla equivalent of) that. This gorilla tolerates the banging and screaming of these ill-behaved kids for a while, then decided enough is enough and gives them a well deserved scare. Hats off to you, gorilla. You're the hero we need.
4 Another Beluga Has Had Enough
Beluga whales are not only highly intelligent but are also either quite playful or extremely angry, if internet videos have taught us anything, at any rate. Here we see yet another beluga scaring human children. When his first surprising gape doesn't sufficiently frighten the kids, the whale regroups, then flashes a much larger, much more aggressive snarl. His behavior is strangely identifiable; you can almost hear the whale saying: "What? WHAT!? Yeah, that's right. I'm a whale."
3 Dog Goes for the Top
The problem with some animals is that they don't much care of the thing they're attacking is a toy, a foe, or the hair of young child. This pup decides this girl's hair looks like a great thing to sink its teeth into, and it proceeds to latch on with such ferocity that he drags her down off of a stool and all the way to the ground. To be fair, the kid's self defense instincts seem rather weak, but you should be able to sit at a computer in the home without fear of sudden attack... unless you have pets.
2 Into the Drink
The setup here is so painfully obvious you would almost think this tableau was staged save for the fact that it is scientifically impossible to train a cat. Therefore you know this is a genuine scenario: a young boy leans over a swimming pool, reaching out for a ball that fell in, and soon enough an opportunistic airborne cat flies in and knocks the child into the water, then executes a perfect escape itself. One can only imagine how proud the cat must have felt about this surgical strike. That is the kind of precision that just can't be taught.
1 Dog Owns Boy, Cat Owns Dog
Alright, yes, we've taken a lot of shots at cats here today, but only because cats are so often jerks to people. But the fact is that most cats are good pets and decently well-tempered animals, they just need their space. This cat, however, is a badass crime fighter who needs a cape, mask and a signal light shining in the night sky. When a young boy playing in his own driveway was suddenly attacked by a neighborhood dog that had gotten loose, the family cat immediately comes flying headlong into the action, driving the dog away and saving the child from what could have been serious injuries.