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Warsaw. “Świniodzik” in close contact with the dog. Residents of Tarchomin: He appears here several times a day

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A lawn in front of a block of flats in Warsaw’s Tarchomin district. At first glance, the scene seems innocent – a spotted white boar accompanied by a German shepherd. “Świniodzik”, as the inhabitants call him, comes to the estate even several times a day. Is it safe? – Wild boars perceive dogs as predators. Their close contacts may end badly – warns Andżelika Gackowska from the City Forests.

– But what a tame boar, somehow he doesn’t beat him there. Only years – comments a resident who witnessed close contact between a wild boar and a German shepherd. Others are happy that the animals are “having fun”.

– Are wild boars so patchy? – the woman watching the events is surprised. “It’s a pig-hog, a misalliance, ma’am,” replies her neighbor. In the video, the boar is constantly chasing the dog.

The situation took place on Monday, May 29. – This “pig” appears on the estate at Śreniawitów Street several times a day – Grzegorz, a resident of Tarchomin, who recorded the event, tells us.

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A close encounter between a wild boar and a dog in TarchominGregory

For the wild boar, the dog is a predator

We asked Andżelika Gackowska, deputy director for forest management in the City Forests in Warsaw, about the assessment of the situation, which receive reports from residents about wild boars appearing in the city.

– We know from our experience that dogs are attacked by wild boars. If someone lets a dog off the leash in green areas, in a forest, it is basically illegal. This is a threat to this dog. The owner must take into account that the wild boar may react aggressively – warns Gackowska. – Wild boars perceive dogs as predators, as a threat. Such dogs, which even have good intentions, go to say hello, get acquainted with another animal, their close contacts can end badly and wild boars can perceive it as an attack – he explains.

Read also: It’s not wild boars that have taken over the Wrocław park. “They are hybrids with domestic and Vietnamese pigs”

As he admits, as a result of similar situations, claims are submitted to the institution – they concern compensation or coverage of the costs of veterinary care for dogs that have been injured by wild boars. – If here it was a situation in which the dog did not suffer, then you can congratulate the good luck of the dog and its guardian – says our interlocutor.

It can spread ticks

But besides the fact that a wild boar can injure a dog, there is another threat. The deputy director of the City Forests points out that wild animals have a lot of parasites on them, including ticks. These, in turn, can carry Lyme disease that is dangerous to dogs.

– Admittedly, we have not met a wild boar that would be sick with rabies and that would attack any other animals or humans, but theoretically it is possible – admits Gackowska. – The greater threat here are foxes, raccoon dogs and small predators. There were also two cases of rabies in deer or cats – he cites.

Why are there so many wild boars?

According to the specialist, the city creates very good conditions for wild animals. Especially Warsaw, where the area of ​​green areas is over 40 percent.

– Wild boars are an example of this situation because they are not territorial, they are very intelligent. This allows them to get used to living in the city, learn to use what we leave in their surroundings, and what they can use to eat – he explains.

As he assures, the presence of wild animals in the city does not result from intensive hunting around Warsaw. – This statement is nonsense, because it is enough to follow the data on, for example, the shooting of wild animals around the city. Over the last 10 years, there has been a three-fold decrease in the number of hunts in the Mazowieckie Voivodeship. There are definitely more forests or green areas in the city and outside the city. If someone is already driving wild boars out of forest areas, it is us, tourists, not hunters – he estimates.

More and more wild boars in WarsawCity Hall of Warsaw

Wild animals feel safe in the city. It’s warm, there’s plenty to eat, there’s a place to hide. In Gackowska’s opinion, people are no longer a threat to them.

– Because wild animals are not hunted, they are even fed. Wild animals are surrounded by such a cult. They have no reason to move out of here. I am talking here about species that have a character that allows them to function in such conditions. They are wild, they get used to our presence – he claims. However, as he notes, we bring the problem on ourselves. – By putting garbage in front of properties, throwing food leftovers in front of fences and balconies, feeding – he enumerates.

On Facebook groups of residents, however, you can find a lot of videos of wild boars recorded at close range. “It’s the worst thing you can do, because we don’t know what’s going on in the animal’s head.” How will he take this approach? For one, it may be neutral, for the other, a situation that gives the impression of a threat. We can’t predict that, she says.

– A sow with young will behave differently than a one-year-old piglet who is looking for food in our area and does not feel threatened – he says. Finally, animals, like people, can have different days.

That is why it is important not to treat wild animals as pets. According to the expert, it is best to treat them with respect and distance.

Close encounter. How to behave?

According to Gackowska, when we see a wild boar, it is best to turn around and give the animal a wide berth. A lot depends on the place. – If we encounter an animal on a closed property, we leave as soon as possible and call the services – he advises.

– If we meet wild boars on the street, when they are feeding on the lawn, try not to interact with them. Do not take selfies with them, and above all, do not give them anything to eat. Because that’s the worst thing we can do.

On the other hand, if we meet wild boars in the forest, we must remember that this is their territory. – We keep the dog on a leash, we do not leave the marked trails, we absolutely do not leave anything to eat behind us – he says.

More and more reports

The deputy director of the City Forests admits that there are more and more reports of wild boars in the city. Since the beginning of the year, there were already 1,545 of them. A sharp jump took place in 2019 and 2020, when the sanitary shootings ended.

The wild boar population is also developing dynamically because they have enormous reproductive potential. – They can increase by 200 percent in a year – he enumerates.

Last year there were decisions to shoot. The population was reduced by 250 individuals in Warsaw. No decision has been made this year. The city is currently reviewing the situation.

Trzaskowski about shooting wild boarsTVN24

They only attack in extreme situations

Should you be afraid of wild boars? Can they attack? – The last case that I know of, which was echoed in the media, is an accident a child who was attacked by a wild boar in Legnica September 2, 2022. As for Warsaw, there are reports from residents who claim that they were attacked by a wild boar. However, these appear to be mock attacks. Wild boars sometimes run up to an animal or a person if they want to scare it. They run intensively and brake – describes Gackowska.

He points out, however, that attacks occur very rarely, in extreme situations. When the animal is injured or when there is no escape route.

– Animals are pragmatic, they never know how a situation will end, so they really don’t make hasty decisions. They scare, but the transition to a given attack is extreme. I’m not saying it won’t happen, because it might. However, this is not a situation that should worry residents that wild boars will attack people – he claims.

Main photo source: Gregory

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