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Zoo-goers shocked to see brave dog barking and wagging its tail at a giant cheetah in Canberra Zoo

Heartstopping moment a brave dog risks its life sneaking into a cheetah enclosure at an Australian zoo – as visitors watch on in horror as it barks at the big cat

  • Visitors were shocked to see a brave dog had snuck into the cheetah enclosure 
  • Brazen dog was barking at the wild animal at Canberra’s National Zoo on Friday
  • Dog leant down on it’s front legs and wagged its tail playfully at the spotted cat

Shocked zoo-goers have captured the incredible moment a brave dog sneaks into a cheetah enclosure and starts to bark at one of the wild cats. 

Simon, who was visiting Canberra’s National Zoo and Aquarium, was part of a group of spectators who witnessed the bizarre encounter on Friday.

The brave canine is seen incessantly barking at one of the large cheetahs in the woodland enclosure, while the spotted cat lies on its side enjoying the sun. 

The brave canine is seen incessantly barking at one of the large cheetahs in the woodland enclosure, while the spotted cat lies on its side enjoying the sun

While an interaction with an unrestrained cheetah at the National Zoo will cost customers $175, this brave dog was able to get up close and personal for free. 

Visitors watched as the brazen canine leant down on its front paws in a playful manner, wagging its tail as the cheetah bared its sharp teeth and growled. 

In one hair-raising moment the agitated cheetah raises a paw in an attempt to bat the intruder away, however the dog remains unrelenting.  

The canine continues to circle the wild animal as the cheetah grows increasingly tired of the disturbance, finally pulling itself up onto its front paws. 

The dog retreats a few metres away from the spotted cat but continues to bark.  

In the United States, the San Diego Zoo found the unlikely animal pairing had a positive effect on an anxious cheetah who could be calmed by a dog’s presence. 

Visitors watched as the brazen pet leant down on its front paws in a playful manner, wagging its tail as the cheetah bared its teeth and growled

Visitors watched as the brazen pet leant down on its front paws in a playful manner, wagging its tail as the cheetah bared its teeth and growled

The dog-and-cat buddy system has been employed in at least 15 zoos across the country, including in Virginia and Dallas. 

According to the National Geographic, because cheetahs can become easily agitated in captivity a dogs easygoing demeanour can help the big cats relax.  

The edgy cheetah will then model its behaviour on the placid canine, picking up important social cues that help the animals thrive in captivity. 

Cheetahs are an increasingly vulnerable population having previously faced extinction at least two times in the past. 

Pressure from climate change, hunting by humans and destruction of their natural habitat have impacted on the dwindling numbers of the wild cats, as well as the species low rate of reproductive success.  

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