No matter what the species, it seems we all have this innate feature built in us to just adore cute, cuddly, and sweet looking creatures. Perhaps it’s a nurturing factor, an aesthetic factor, or just the fact that cute animals look so innocent and lovable that we want to reach out and embrace them or simply smile at their fun behavior. Some animals, however, even as endearing and sweet as they may seem can do much more harm than you might ever imagine… in fact they could even kill you. Check out some of the cutest creatures on the planet that truly can knock you dead!
The Slow Loris
How cute is this guy?! One of the cutest little mammals on the planet, the slow loris with his ginormously engaging eyes and soft fur, just kind of makes you want to snuggle up with him and keep him as a pet right? Not! This sweet and innocent looking fellow is actually one of the more poisonous animals on the planet due to his ability to create a toxin which it secretes from the Brachial glands in his elbows. The loris licks this venom while mixing it with their saliva and smears it all over their young to protect them. This venomous mixture can also be delivered by a bite. If you happen across a slow loris and attempt to give the sweet creature a pet on the head and accidentally piss him off, you might quickly end up in the hospital or worse yet… dead from anaphylactic shock.
The Australian Bat
Beyond cute, this sweet natured and incredibly agile flyer is something you would not want near you… ever. Most people view bats with an unwarranted fear, but these cute Australian bats have been known to kill with nothing more than a simple scratch from their nails. The reason these innocent looking animals are so deadly is that because a large number of them are infected with Lyssavirus, a fatal disease similar to rabies. It is usually transmitted through the saliva with a bite or scratch in the skin. Those cute flying foxes carry deadly viruses as well, the most notorious of which are the Hendra virus, Lyssavirus, Nipah virus and Menangle virus. Hendra virus is the most lethal in Australia.
The Northern Short-Tailed Shrew
The Northern Short-tailed Shrew might look like a tiny, cute, and cuddly animal, but watch out, this critter has a nasty venomous bite. The largest shrew in its family, the Northern short tail is another one of the few venomous mammals around today. The saliva of the Northern Short-tailed Shrew contains an enzyme that is used to paralyze and subdue its prey. The toxin protects the shrew against other, much larger predators, even including humans. The poisonous saliva is secreted from sub maxillary glands in his incisors where it is injected into its prey, much like that of a poisonous snake. While some might only experience burning, pain, and blistering at the wounds site, others may experience an allergic reaction such as an anaphylactic shock which left untreated most definitely will result in death.
Cartoons have done such a wonderful job in humanizing and bringing attention to creatures that should not be viewed as cute or sweet, but nonetheless, the seemingly gentle hippo, with a face that constantly looks as though it’s grinning, makes our list. Just because hippos seem to waddle around and play in the mud like kids doesn’t mean they are approachable in any sense of the word. Hippos are incredibly territorial and kill hundreds of people every year who approach them and their space. Hippos are also fast runners despite their large size and slow behavior on land. These guys can kill with sheer force via their weight or their bite. Although, not meat eaters, they will still use their mouths and large teeth for protection and fighting. Any human caught in a clash with a hippo will lose and regardless of how cute they might look on television, these creatures are a force you do not want to mess with.
The Puffer fish
Perhaps not cuddly, but defiantly cute, this appealing puffer fish is at the top of our list of cute animals that can knock you dead… especially if you eat it. Sushi anyone? Besides the fact that puffer fish can blow up to resemble a spiky balloon in order to frighten away any predators looking for a snack, they are also filled with the deadly neurotoxin tetrodox. This toxin is a strong muscle paralyzer, with no known cure. Anyone or anything that makes this fish dinner quickly becomes paralyzed, unable to breath, and dies. Many extreme risk takers have enjoyed the delicacy of puffer fish sushi crafted by master sushi chefs, which is known to give a pleasant tingling sensation in the mouth if prepared correctly. Not sure dying for sushi is on my list of things to try, but to each his own!
No, I am not talking about the character from the X-men comics; this cute animal is far more aggressive and dangerous… really. The wolverine is actually a large weasel, and although cute in pictures, you would be wise to stay far, far away from this animal. The wolverine, which resembles a bear more so than a weasel is equipped with powerful jaws, sharp claws and an extremely muscular body. This cute creature has the ability to take down prey as large as a moose and would not hesitative to go after a human if here were hungry or if you were unfortunate enough to came too close or threaten him.
The Leopard seal
Seals are so sleek, so beautiful, and so darn cute, how could you not like them? How about being dragged under the icy water and eaten by one of them… might change your mind? Leopard seals are strong, powerful and highly agile killers… yes, killers. Most notorious for devouring penguins, but if given the chance they’d go after humans in an instant… in fact they have. This animal, while very cute to look at (with its mouth closed) is one cute creature that would knock you dead, eat you up, and then play with whatever is left over… sorry, can you tell I am not a fan of leopard seals, they scare the crap out of me!
The cute and curious chimp, a close relative to us humans, is one of the most charming critters on the planet. With their very human expressions and soulful eyes you can’t help but enjoy them and be amused by their playful ways. So similar to little children with their silly nature they evoke strong feelings of nurturing from many people- so strong in fact that many people choose to keep these chimps as pets. Unfortunately, just like humans, chimpanzees also have unfavorable traits and these traits, such as violence, can result in bloody battles, broken bones, disfigurement, and even death. Chimps are wild animals with incredible strength and unknown personalities that can change in an instant. While chimps are most definitely cute and cuddly, they can also knock you down with a simple blow and are definitely best left in the wild.
The Cape Buffalo
These fluffy buffalo may not be the most adorable creatures in the wild, but they are kind of cute in their own way. The Cape buffalo, which resembles a large hairy cow, is one of the most dangerous animals in Africa. These creatures are often hunted as big game, making man ones of its biggest predators. Because of this, the male buffalo acts extremely vicious towards humans and will actually charge after a person with intent to kill. Definitely not passive herbivores, these creatures will knock you dead with a single blow!
With their adorable bandit like markings and curious nature, raccoons are one of the more popular yet wild creatures we see around the United States. These super cute creatures have adapted rather well to city living, even benefiting from it. However, these adorably cuddly looking animals with intelligence greater than dogs and cats can also be deadly to humans. In the United States, raccoons are the most common carrier of rabies in the wild. Rabies is a viral disease spread by bites and scratches and can be fatal if it is not treated promptly. For the most part, raccoons are not aggressive, however if infected they can cause serious harm and even death to humans. These adorable creatures may seem like fun to watch or even feed, but it’s best to be careful and avoid them.