An Astonishing Number Of People Think They Could Beat A Kangaroo In A Fight

A man with a gun and a dog in a field

It’s a debate I know nearly every man has pondered with his buddies after a few beers. I assume it’s probably something that ladies spend a lot of time discussing at wine nights too… “What’s the toughest wild animal you think you can beat up?”

Luckily, very few people ever actually have to fight animals, either recreationally or in self defense. In my opinion, animals would win in way more fights than people give them credit for, especially just matched up against your average every day American citizen.

As far as the toughest animal a person could take in a fight, it’s an argument that will never be answered since people don’t exactly square up with gorillas, grizzly bears, and dogs of different weight classes for title fights on a regular basis.

There being no tangible solution for the question of “what’s the toughest animal you think you can beat up?” is part of what makes the debate so alluring. While I don’t ever see there being a bracket set up for a Roman Coliseum style human-wildlife fight club, there are some new tangible statistics about that question to help fuel the debate.

A survey recently posed the question, “Which of the following animals, if any, do you think could beat in a fight a if you were unarmed?”

A number of interesting tidbits can be observed when looking at the survey data on a chart.

A screenshot of a computer

Compared to women, men feel most able to take on medium-sized dogs and geese.

72% of survey respondents are confident they could beat a rat in a fight, 69% think they could beat up a house cat,  and 61% of folks think they can cook a goose in a fight.

Only 23% think they could beat a big dog in a fight, compared to 49% who think they could take down a medium sized dog in some fisticuffs.

Grizzly bears were considered the toughest to beat in a fight, with only 6% of crazy ass people indicating they would win that fight.  Lions, gorillas, and elephants were all equally as invincible according to the survey data.

22% of men think they could fight a chimpanzee which tells me they don’t know what a chimpanzee is. Also, just 14% of people think they can beat up a kangaroo, but that number still seems disrespectful to kangaroos.

Although there was that one Australian legend that landed a stiff right hook across a kangaroo’s face for messing with his dog.

The survey also included questions about what animals would in theoretical fights with other animals. Which apparently simulated and imaginary animal fighting is reportedly an entire literary genre of its own. There is a book series, a video game battle simulator, and even a Discovery Channel documentary dedicated to establishing the outcome of hypothetical animal combat.


Overall elephants and rhinos were voted the toughest two species. Grizzly bears were voted the 3rd toughest species. Interestingly enough, polar bears were only the 9th toughest species despite being larger, powerful, and more hostile than grizzly bears which means that list is already in need of more debate.

Tigers, hippos, and lions were also voted to be some of the toughest animals.

In terms of ranking the 34 species in terms of toughness, unarmed humans finished 33rd on the list – slightly tougher than a goose but not as tough as an ostrich. And honestly, I’m not even sure that’s fair to the geese. Geese have straight up kicked some peoples asses before.

For example, even this gentlemen would not have been able to fight off the angry goose if he was unarmed, he had to use a briefcase as shield and a rolled up newspaper like a sword.

A beer bottle on a dock



A beer bottle on a dock