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Old 05-26-2016, 12:18 PM
Blue Blistering Barnacle Blue Blistering Barnacle is offline
Join Date: Dec 2011
Posts: 5,222
Originally Posted by Stinky Pete View Post
Lions, tigers, bears, monkeys, apes, wolves, and more. Even if raised among humans completely in a friendly environment from birth, there is always a chance they will attack and maul/kill a human. Doesn't matter if they've had a long history of gentle behavior. And what triggers these domesticated wild animals to attack is not always apparent. (I guess domesticated is the wrong word to use).

Our normally domestic animals like dogs, cats, cows, horses, chickens, pigs, etc have had many generations of the wildness bred out of them. These animals can be raised to be completely safe to be around (unless provoked).
Wild animals can be "tamed". Domesticated animals are just generally more tractable and responsive to training; they are born "tamer". Compare zebra and horses.

Any animal (including humans, as noted upthread) can be capable of injuring humans. Larger ones more so than smaller, just because.

From my reading about horses when my daughter started riding (much of it on SDMB), people who work with large animal livestock (ya know, the domesticated ones) pretty much accept that they will be physically hurt by their animals from time to time ("not so much if, but when").

I'm guessing that the addition of pointy teeth and predatory instincts don't make animals safer to be around.

Now for my anecdote, relayed to me by a keeper at a zoo I used to hang out at when I was young. A male tiger kept there had been raised from cubhood by a bigwig at the zoo. Although he would no longer play with the adult male, he would reach through the bars from time to time to stroke his head, and this was received affectionately. One time he did this after an adult female had been enclosed with him (for a mating opportunity). He supposed it was safe, as she was on the other side of the enclosure, but she jumped clear across the enclosure (which was rather small by modern standards, but still a fair distance) and grabbed his arm, severely mauling it.