It’s easy to forget just how unpredictable animals can be when a vast majority of the population live with some form of creature in their home. But whilst we may have been able to domesticate dogs and cats, we still have a long way to go with regards to wild animals.

Not that you’d want to live with a big cat in your home because, whilst they may look exotic, they are also natural born predators. With sharp claws and unforgiving teeth, they could make a meal of a meager human in seconds. One person who knows this only too well is Britton Hayes, an American tourist who found himself dangerously close to a wild cheetah whilst on a spring break trip through the Serengeti in Tanzania, Africa.

Watch the potentially life-threatening moment here and marvel at Hayes’ narrow escape…

Hayes had expected to get up close and personal with wild animals on his trip, but that was given a whole new meaning when a cheetah hopped into the Jeep he was traveling in.

“While we were all watching the cheetah in the front, one of the brothers had flanked around the back and hopped in back of the vehicle to try and sniff us and make sure that we weren’t a threat,” the resolutely calm Hayes explains.

“Honestly, it was probably one of the scariest moments of my life while it was happening. I felt like I had to clear my mind of any thoughts because from everything you’re told about predators like that, they can sense fear and any sort of discomfort you’re feeling and they’ll react accordingly.

“We just, everyone in the car just looked at each other, we paused for 10 seconds as the cheetahs walked away and we couldn’t believe that we got out of the situation, that it was real.”

Whilst cheetahs are not known to actively hunt humans, there is no doubt that being in a confined space with one is a terrifying experience when you’re new to the wild world. Although given Hayes’ reaction, we think he’d fit right in in the wilderness!