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Are Giraffes Friendly?

There are some animals that are truly fascinating. One animal that is pretty high up this list is the giraffe. From a young age, we are taught that giraffes are magnificent creatures. But are giraffes friendly? 

Their long necks make them totally unique, and their magnificent size leaves tons of people wanting to see these creatures in person.

Are Giraffes Friendly

Until you see a giraffe in person, you will not be able to understand just how breathtaking these animals are.

You can probably see giraffes in a zoo near you, but for the best experience, you should see these creatures in their natural habitat. 

Giraffes are not one of the big five, but they are a big part of why so many people go on game drives during safaris in Tanzania.

You might have visions of yourself meeting a giraffe for the first time, and even striking it. But one thing you might want to ask yourself first is “are giraffes friendly?”. 

It is easy to assume that these magnificent beasts will be gentle and friendly, but that isn’t necessarily the case. In this guide, we’ll have a look at whether, or not, giraffes are friendly.

Keep on reading to find out more!

What Are Giraffes?

Most people know what giraffes are, but just in case, let’s have a look. Well, as we have said, giraffes are magnificent creatures that are most famous because of their unique experience.

Giraffes have incredibly long necks that allow them to eat leaves directly from trees.

It is these long necks that make these animals so famous because there really are no other creatures quite like them on the planet. 

Giraffes hail from Africa. They have a coat pattern that is made up of irregular splodges that is instantly recognizable.

There are actually 4 different species of giraffe, but all 4 have a fairly similar appearance. To put it bluntly, you will always be able to recognize a giraffe, it is not a species that will confuse you. 

By 4 years of age, giraffes will reach their adult height. They normally measure between 4.5 and 5.5 meters, depending on whether they are male (a bull) or female (a cow).

They will continue to gain weight as they age. Giraffes will typically live for up to 25 years in the wild, and there are an estimated 68,000 giraffes living in the wild, with around 28,850 of these giraffes living in Tanzania.

While they are not considered endangered, giraffes are a “vulnerable” species as their natural habitat is being lost, and they are at risk of illegal hunting. But are they friendly? Let’s find out.

Are Giraffes Friendly?

Generally speaking, yes, giraffes are friendly. These creatures tend to have gentle personalities and aren’t a species that would actively attack a human being.

So, even though these creatures are massive, you don’t need to worry about them attacking you if you encounter one in the wild. Unless they feel threatened, giraffes are unlikely to lash out.

Are Giraffes Friendly

There are a number of creatures in the wild that aren’t particularly friendly, or at least won’t act in a friendly manner when you first encounter them.

Most of these animals are animals which hunt prey. Giraffes are herbivores, so they do not hunt their food. Instead, they simply feast on shoots and leaves from the acacia tree.

Giraffes are grazers, so they do not have the aggressive tendencies associated with hunting to survive. 

Giraffes are pack animals, so when you see them in the wild, they will often move around in large groups. They live like this to protect themselves from the threat of other animals.

There are lots of predators in the wild that will hunt giraffes if other food sources aren’t available. 

While giraffes do not tend to be aggressive against these predators, they do travel in groups to ensure that they are safe, and not vulnerable.

Many predators will attack giraffes while they are drinking from the watering hole, as their bent over position gives access to the neck.

By travelling in a pack, half of the giraffes can drink while the other half keep watch for predators.

However, giraffes rarely drink from a watering hole. As part of their aversion to aggression, giraffes tend to get the majority of their hydration through the leaves and shoots that they feast upon.

Generally, giraffes are peaceful and friendly creatures. But do they like humans? Let’s find out.

Do Giraffes Like Humans?

Before we answer this question, it is important to differentiate between wild giraffes, and giraffes in captivity.

Giraffes in the wild are very different because they will not have a lot of interaction with humans, whereas giraffes in captivity will regularly see humans throughout their day-to-day life.

Are Giraffes Friendly

While giraffes are friendly creatures, this friendliness doesn’t mean that you should approach them.

As we have said, giraffes will rarely attack unless they feel threatened, but this doesn’t mean that you should simply walk up to them and force yourself upon them when you see them in the wild. 

These animals may be mild-mannered, but they are also wild animals. They are not domesticated, and they are not used to interacting with humans.

While this friendliness may differ from giraffe to giraffe, generally giraffes in the wild will not like humans. 

However, this differs for giraffes raised in captivity. There are a lot of giraffes raised in captivity across the world, and mostly these giraffes will be more friendly to humans than wild giraffes.

Giraffes in captivity are dependent on humans, and they have a lot more interaction with humans. Especially giraffes that are born and raised in captivity.

Even then, giraffes in captivity are usually only friendly to their keepers. So, you shouldn’t approach a giraffe in captivity unless there is a zookeeper present.

While these animals aren’t aggressive, their large size could put you at risk if they get spooked. So while these creatures are friendly, it is still best to watch giraffes from a distance.


In short, yes, giraffes are friendly creatures. However, this doesn’t mean that you should approach them in the wild.

If a giraffe feels threatened, it will lash out to protect itself and its offspring. So it is best to simply observe these magnificent creatures from a distance.


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