Giraffe’s Mistake at Texas Safari Leaves Family Stunned but Safe

A recent trip to Fossil Rim Wildlife Center in Glen Rose, Texas, turned into a harrowing experience for a family when a giraffe grabbed their 2-year-old daughter from the bed of their pickup truck. Jason Toten and his family were enjoying a drive-thru safari on June 1 when the unexpected encounter occurred.

Giraffe’s Mistake at Texas Safari Leaves Family Stunned but Safe

Family Day Turns Dramatic

We were having a little family day, just getting out of the house, Toten shared in an interview with McClatchy News. The family had been feeding the animals when one of the towering giraffes approached them. Paisley, their daughter, was in the back of the truck with her mother, holding a bag of food.

Video footage shows the giraffe reaching for the bag but accidentally grabbing Paisley’s shirt instead, lifting her off her feet and into the air. Paisley was holding the bag, and the giraffe went to go get the bag, not her, but it ended up getting her shirt too and picked her up, Toten explained.

Scary Moment Quickly Resolved

Jason Toten described his terrifying reaction: I looked out the back window and I saw the giraffe… and then up she went. Fear surged through him as he watched his daughter lifted by the animal. However, his fiancée’s firm hey startled the giraffe, causing it to release Paisley almost immediately.

The incident was captured from another vehicle, showing Paisley dropping harmlessly back into the bed of the truck. I guess it startled the giraffe, Toten added. He confirmed that Paisley was unfazed by the incident: As soon as her mom caught her, she went ‘oh’.

No Harm Done

The family quickly drove away after ensuring their daughter’s safety. Despite the scare, they did make another stop at the center’s gift shop. Paisley’s immediate request? A toy giraffe and a giraffe T-shirt. Smiling, Toten said: We ended up getting her both, we figured she deserved it.

Giraffe’s Mistake at Texas Safari Leaves Family Stunned but Safe

A Memorable Visit

Despite the close call, Toten insisted that they would return to Fossil Rim Wildlife Center. His conviction was clear: We’ll definitely go back, he said, adding that they might still ride in the bed of a truck next time because that’s an experience in itself.

Located about 55 miles southwest of Fort Worth, Fossil Rim is renowned worldwide for its conservation efforts. With more than 1,100 species peacefully residing in its 1,800-acre park, visitors have immersive opportunities to connect with rare and exotic wildlife.

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