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Can You Ride a Giraffe?

Three giraffes standing still gazing in to the distance. Can you ride a giraffe?

Have you ever gazed up at a giraffe and wondered if it would be possible to ride one?

Well, you’re not alone. Giraffe riding may seem like a whimsical and enchanting experience, but there’s more to consider than what meets the eye.

This article will delve into the feasibility of saddling up on one of these majestic creatures and the factors that come into play.

Can You Ride a Giraffe?

Giraffe bending down drinking also looks like it could be in the position for a rider to mount it.
Giraffe bending down drinking also looks like it could be in the position for a rider to mount it. ozkanzozmen/

In theory, you can ride a giraffe if you can get onto its back and secure yourself. However, it’s more complex than it sounds due to a giraffe’s back’s unique shape and slope. Giraffes aren’t naturally designed for riding, so finding a suitable saddle might be challenging.

To ride a giraffe, you would need the following:

  1. Own a giraffe: Riding a giraffe starts with having one, which is no easy feat since they are wild animals and are not typically found in pet shops. Remember that owning a giraffe is probably restricted by local laws and regulations.
  2. Train the giraffe: Before attempting to ride, you need to train the giraffe to follow simple commands, like walking beside a set of steps or a ramp so that you can climb onto its back. Keep in mind that giraffes are wild creatures, and it might be difficult to train them.
  3. Teach the giraffe to ride: This step is even more challenging than the first two, as you would have to teach the giraffe to accept you as a rider and move according to your commands.

Although it might be tempting to think about riding a giraffe, you should consider the difficulties, animal welfare, and legal aspects before making any attempt.

Dangers of Riding a Giraffe


When you consider riding a giraffe, it can be both difficult and dangerous. Firstly, a giraffe’s height is around 4.9 – 5.5 m (16 – 18 ft), with its neck measuring 1.8 m (6 ft) long. This poses a significant challenge in terms of getting on and off its back.

Riding a giraffe is not healthy for the animal. A giraffe’s body is not designed for carrying passengers, and having someone sit on its back can cause harm to its spine. Some giraffe species are endangered, so it’s our responsibility to protect them and not put them in harm’s way.

Remembering that accidents can happen, especially when dealing with such large creatures as giraffes, is crucial. They can become agitated or stressed, leading to severe injuries or even fatalities.

Given these risks, it’s clear that you should refrain from riding giraffes. Instead, admire these majestic creatures from a safe distance.

So if you want to ride an animal, it’s best to stick to simple animals like a horse or a camel.

Giraffe-riding Circus Performer

Shandor Larenty, a 17-year-old boy from South Africa, is reviving an old family tradition of riding giraffes. His English great uncle Terry was a performer in the 1950s Chipperfield’s circus and was the only known person to ride a giraffe at the time.

Shandor has raised a baby giraffe named Mara since birth and is now training her to be ridden by humans. Mara is taking baby steps to learn the ropes, and Shandor believes that riding her will keep her fit and healthy into old age. Shandor also has an adult pet giraffe named Purdy, who is 18ft tall.

Drunk Man Rides a Giraffe

A drunk man proved himself to be a pain in the neck for this giraffe when he was filmed at a zoo in Kazakhstan attempting to ride a giraffe. After climbing the fence surrounding the giraffe’s enclosure, the man clung to the giraffe’s neck.

The giraffe at first appeared to let the man cling on until it had enough and bucked him from its back. The man was not ready to give up just yet as he once more climbed the perimeter fence again. This time, the giraffe had none of it and shook the man off almost as soon as he grappled it.