2. There are only 7,500 cheetahs left in Africa
We made our way back to the entrance and we were given some instructions on how to safely be around the cheetahs. Safety was a priority here, but for some reason I wasn’t scared to pet such a large animal. In my mind, it didn’t quite register that this could be dangerous! I was just really excited. Cheetahs are not dangerous to the human population, so maybe that’s why I was so calm.
We were told not to approach the cheetahs from the front, but rather circle them and SLOWLY kneel behind them, in a crouch. We also had to put one knee on the ground in case we had to get up quickly. The cheetahs can sometimes be moody on hot days like this, and this may result in them not wanting to be around people other than their handlers. We were also only supposed to rub them from head to tail. They don’t like it when you pet them against the way their fur grows.
I was glad that we were given such extensive precautions before entering the cheetah cage, because we NEEDED them. As soon as we knelt down, the cheetah flipped over and we had to jump up on our feet. Even though this guys was skinny he moved with great power and speed. We circled around him but the cheetah rolled over once more. He just wasn’t in a mood for this! We were told that because it was late the cheetahs were sometimes hot and agitated. We left the cage feeling unsatisfied with our encounter.