Do Kangaroos Kill Dogs? Read This First!

Kangaroos are known worldwide as one of the symbols of Australia, and as a result of that, there are very few people out there who actually dislike them.

Do Kangaroos Kill Dogs Read This First!

This marsupial is one of the most loved animals to come from Australia, especially when Australia is known for so many freaky spiders and snakes! 

However, there are some occasions where people may actually be afraid of these animals, and that’s usually because they’re dog owners!

Dog owners across Australia always worry when they see a kangaroo because there are often stories and rumors spread about kangaroos killing dogs. 

So, if you’re wondering whether or not kangaroos do kill dogs, then we recommend that you read this first before you look anywhere else!

Can Kangaroos Kill Dogs?

Before we question whether kangaroos kill dogs, we should probably consider if a kangaroo can kill a dog!

Unfortunately, the answer to this question is yes, because, despite the sizes that some dogs can grow to, they’re still unlikely to be able to fight off the sheer size and strength of a kangaroo!

Kangaroos have also developed a pretty brutal method of killing their predators too… 

When they’re being chased by a predator, or an animal that they perceive as a threat, kangaroos will lead their pursuer to a body of water, where they will wade in and wait for their attack to follow them in.

It is then where the kangaroo will make use of their powerful forelegs to get their attacker into a grip and hold them under the water until they drown. 

Aside from this brutal killing method, kangaroos also have super strong back legs and sharp claws that could also deal considerable damage to a dog, no matter what the size was, so yes a kangaroo could definitely kill a dog. 

Do Kangaroos Kill Dogs?

When asking whether or not a kangaroo does kill dogs or not, the answer becomes much more complicated, but in reality, the answer is: Very rarely. 

This is because for the most part, the average domesticated pet dog, and a wild kangaroo, will likely never come into contact with one another, so the potential for an incident where a kangaroo was to kill a dog is low, to begin with. 

In addition to this, kangaroos are a rather defensive animal, and are much more likely to flee if they’re feeling threatened, in fact, the kangaroo would have to feel rather seriously threatened with no option to run away for it to consider attacking back, so these incidents are rarer than you think. 

Kangaroos: Strong, But Passive

Kangaroos are from a family of mammals known as marsupials, which are known for the distinctive feature of having a pouch on their bodies in which they are able to carry their young inside. 

The male kangaroo can reach an impressive size, and it isn’t uncommon for them to be taller than humans either, the red kangaroo, which is what most westerners will envision when they picture a kangaroo, is the largest of all kangaroo species. 

When it comes to how common they are, kangaroos can be found all over Australia, but even so, it doesn’t mean they have constant natural contact with humans, so when a human does encounter a kangaroo, it’s often when a human has decided to actively go into the wild, whether this is for exploring off-roading, or camping. 

Overall though, despite their strength, kangaroos are passive and defensive animals, so the likelihood of them attacking a human or a pet dog is incredibly small.

In addition to this, kangaroos are completely herbivores, so they don’t really have any desire to kill another animal for food either. 

Encountering A Kangaroo 

Dogs are amazing animals and are known for being extremely curious too, so when they see another animal that they’re unsure of, there’s a good chance that they will want to sniff that animal.

In addition to this curiosity, dogs can also be extremely protective of the owners too, both of these things can lead to a level of unpredictability when it comes to encountering an animal (see also: Animals That Come Out At Night)such as a kangaroo. 

If you feel like there’s potential for you to encounter a kangaroo whilst on a walk or hike with your dog,then you should be sure to bring along a leash with you, which will allow you to prevent your dog from approaching the kangaroo, or at least prevent your dog from following it into the water, where it might then be at risk of being seriously injured, or worse, killed by the kangaroo. 

It’s also worth noting that an encounter with a kangaroo can be extremely unpredictable, and there are a lot of factors that go into determining what might happen when you do encounter one, the first of which being whether or not the kangaroo you encounter happens to be a large male kangaroo, and the second factor is whether or not it is currently mating season for the kangaroos. 

During mating season, larger kangaroos like to fight in order to assert dominance over one another, and from a distance it might be rather hard to tell whether or not the kangaroo that is closest to you is male or female, and male kangaroos will always have a raised amount of testosterone in them during the mating season due to the breeding and fighting that is such a regular occurrence, which makes them even more unpredictable too.

So, your best bet is to always keep a good amount of distance between you and any kangaroos you see out in the wild.

Kangaroos will only pose a real threat to you and your dog if they happened to feel cornered, which is when they will begin to defend themselves, raising their fists much like a boxer does, all whilst flexing their forelegs and puffing out their chests in an attempt to make themselves seem even larger than what they are. 

They’re fast and are capable of hopping over large objects, but because of their tails they can’t move directly backward, and because some dogs like to herd animals, this can lead to a kangaroo feeling like it is cornered, which is then when it will begin to retaliate.

Again, we recommend keeping your dog on an adequately sized leash in order to prevent this sort of interaction from happening, which will ensure that both you and your dog stay safe! 

So, whilst they might seem like adorable and cuddly animals from all of the photos and television clips you might have seen of kangaroos over the years, the reality is that they can be quite aggressive!


To summarize, kangaroos are more than capable of being able to kill a dog due to their strong forelegs and sharp claws, however, the likelihood of them doing so is incredibly small due to the limited interactions they have with dogs and their owners, and they are much more likely to run away as opposed to retaliating immediately.

So keep your dog on a leash and you’ll be fine!

Olivia Kepner