[LOOK] Proof Wyoming Cougars Do Act Like Cuddly House Cats
The Mountain Lion - or cougar, panther, or puma, depending on where you're from - is a mighty predator. The ferocious felines range from 7 to 8 ft. long, and a fully grown male cougar can weigh up to 150 lbs.
This mountain cat is an accomplished hunter and is considered one of Wyoming's most dangerous predators.
But, these murderous kitties occasionally take a leaf out of their smaller cousins' books and act like big, cuddly (and still murderous) house cats.
Cats, Big or Small, Will Be Cats
Zoos and wildlife cameras across the country have captured the adorable kitty cat actions of cougars. Recently, a video of a mountain lion in Colorado went viral after the cat indulged in playtime on an outdoor swing, batting and playing with the swing before taking it for a spin. The entire video is adorable and proof that big cats love fun as much as smaller felines. But it's not just Colorado Cougars playing the cute kitty card, either.
A video released by National Geographic captured the secret life of a mountain lion family in Wyoming's stunning Wind River Range. Though many scenes in the video display the ferocity of the cougars, there are moments when the big cats turn into playful balls of fur. Seriously - watch the video around 03:30, and you'll see cats playing with each other and getting the zoomies. Watch the whole video, and you'll see cuddling, baths, and yawning moments that remind me of my mother's two house cats.
As if that's not enough proof, the cats at Colorado Mountain Zoo are known to enjoy playing with cardboard boxes - bringing a whole new meaning to the saying "if it fits, it sits."
No Matter How Cute, Mountain Lions Are VERY Dangerous
Of course, just because Mountain Lions can act cute like house cats does not mean you should approach one or try to pet it. Seriously, don't be that guy (or gal).
If you see a mountain lion in the wild, follow these tips or visit the National Park Service website for more info by clicking here:
- Do not approach a lion. In many cases, a lion will avoid confrontation unless provoked. If you can, change your path and return to the safety of your vehicle or a populated area.
- Do not run from a lion. Running can trigger the mountain lion's predatory chase response.
- Do not crouch down or bend over. Never make yourself smaller - this will make you look more like prey.
- Do all you can to appear larger. Wave your arms, yell, bellow, wave your jacket, jump, and do whatever you can to appear larger. Mountain lions are less likely to attack something they think may be dangerous.
- Fight back if attacked. If you get attacked, fight back. Throw rocks, hit the lion with a stick, and do whatever you can to defend yourself. Most importantly, protect your neck and head - they are the lion's primary target.
- Report the Sighting. Always report mountain lion sightings to a park ranger.