A video that appears to show two little ponies saving a French-speaking couple from a raging wild boar has, unsurprisingly, taken the internet by storm.
The dramatic footage, filmed by a couple on a country road believed to be in Belgium, begins innocently enough with a view of the ponies across fields.
Suddenly the squeal of a boar rings out – and the tusked male rounds the corner, apparently distressed.
It seems to want to escape into another field, but then darts straight for the camera, causing a woman’s voice to shout out “J’ai peur! (I’m frightened!)” and the man to declare: “Oh là là! (Oh là là!)”
As the camera-work goes into disarray the galloping ponies can be heard approaching and, when the view of the scene is restored, two can be seen chasing the boar away across their field.
More than 1.5 million people have now viewed the video on YouTube, and it has encouraged a furious debate as to whether or not the ponies were really trying to save the couple.
User El Padre says: “The ponies are our watchers,” to which Kimag100 responds: “It is they who protect us.”
BeauSkunk said: “Remember this video next time somebody tells you that ponies are ‘lame’.”
But YukiSora60 said it was “rather surprising” to see ponies protecting people, adding: “I know that all animals are intelligent but I have never seen horses chasing a beast like that!”
Bryan Spencer, though not seeming to comment on the video directly, said he had lived around “those damned mini-ponies” his whole life and said they were “aggressive, evil and dangerous”. “They really don't like people, or anything else, and they will kick and bite for no reason,” he added.
User Black Box observed that the ponies appear to be “running with the boar at first”. “The ponies did nothing… Just [the board] was outside the fence and wanted to get back in and those folks were in the way.”
Others sided with the “poor boar”. Dame Blanche wrote: “It is the hunters that make these animals mad with fear!” And Eric L summed it up by saying: “Poor boars: their territory is invaded, they have no more dens – men are idiots.”
French news website L’Express sought the expertise of a boar expert from the A to Z of Boars website, who suggested the ponies may simply have started following the boar out of “herd instinct” – intervening more out of playfulness than heroism.
The expert said the boar was “clearly frightened” and likely simply trying to “save his own skin” at the time.
Finally, he gave some useful advice for anyone who might find themselves in a similar situation but without any ponies to come to the rescue.
“For a wild boar in good health and open space to charge is nonetheless rare,” he said. “One should not move, calculate its trajectory and then step aside – because while the sow can come back and bite, the male will continue on its path.” Good to know.
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