20 Animals That Really Wanted to Play Sports
Humans aren't the only species on Earth that enjoy a friendly game of pickup basketball or spending an afternoon at the ballpark. Not by a long shot!
Sports are fun and entertaining enough to attract even the most unlikely of animal fans.
The internet is lousy with videos of groundbreaking animals forcing their way into sports—in one way or another—that have long been dominated by humans.
Here are 20 videos of animals who really want to "play" sports!
Baseball Cat Very Angry About Ejection
An adventurous cat invaded the field at a Myrtle Beach Pelicans game in July 2010 and she was not very receptive to efforts aimed at removing her.
Initially, it seems like the cat may be friendly, but right around the 35-second mark it does that insane back-arch thing that only really angry cats do. Which explains why the player immediately backs off any attempts to wrangle it.
Eventually, the cat is nabbed by a very brave groundskeeper, who exits through a gate in the outfield. I imagine he released the cat out there and was promptly attacked by her and a bunch of her alley cat friends.
Raiders' Pigeon of Doom
There has been a weirdo rogue pigeon haunting the Raiders at home games for years now. This video is from October 2009, but the bird really made headlines in December 2012, when it landed on the field during a game against the Chiefs and flat-out refused to leave.
That wasn't the last of the pigeon though, because I actually saw one on the field at the Coliseum during a Raiders game last month with my own eyeballs. Please don't ask me why I was watching a Raiders game.
It's probably not the same pigeon every time—I don't know what their average lifespan is, let alone the lifespan of one living in Oakland. But I think it's time to really embrace this phenomena. After all, most of them wear the team colors.
"Rogue" Polish Cow
In September 2012 this video of a local soccer game in Poland was posted to YouTube. An energetic cow shows up a little late, but definitely ready to play.
She gallops around the pitch for a few minutes, but sadly decided to leave after the kids treat her like an outcast. Kids really can be such cruel bullies—it gets better, cow!
Frankly, the game didn't look too interesting before the cow arrived, so maybe they should've given her a chance.
Cow Training for the Big Game
Although these videos don't seem to be related on any level, I like to think this is how the cow in the previous video spent the weeks and months leading up to his big moment at the kids soccer game.
He's hustling, kicking around a ball and sparring a little bit with mom. Eventually, he shelves the individual practice and runs off for a scrimmage downfield with his homies.
Two-Dog Tandem Storm the Pitch
If there's anything I've learned from YouTube and Buzzfeed, it's that dogs really like storming the pitch at soccer games. There are countless videos from around the globe of them doing just that.
But of all the dogs on all the pitches in all the world, there are none more adorable than the pair of Labs that took the field at a Turkish match in January 2013. Probably because they did it together!
The dogs look so happy scurrying around the pitch together and stealing the ball that even the players (for once) didn't seem overly eager to stop them. Eventually, they were carried off by the buzzkill police.
Bullsharks Invade Golf Course Lake
File this one under: Only in Australia.
In October 2011, Sky News reported on some intimidating new inhabitants of the Carbrook Golf Club in Brisbane. If you thought the alligators common on various courses in the U.S. were disconcerting, how about a half dozen bullsharks chilling right at the surface of a lake in the center of a course?
Obviously the sharks aren't natural inhabitants of a manmade lake, rather they ended up there several years prior during a major flood, which swept them from a river that had broken its banks. You wouldn't think something like that would've ended well for the bullsharks, but apparently they've really taken to their new home.
The sharks haven't just been surviving, they've been thriving. They've been breeding and just generally making themselves at home. Golfers can see their fins thrashing around the surface just yards away from several greens.
I bet no one is chasing golf balls into the water hazard there.
Parrots Playing Basketball
The court, ball and hoops are all adjusted in size to more accurately reflect the scale of the parrot players in this video. Although, they do have wings, so the hoop probably could've been hiked up a few more inches to make the action a little more competitive!
Even if their flight wings are clipped, birds can still get some air. That being said—the parrots are pretty good. They've mastered the fundamentals of the game and aren't missing the easy shots.
Maybe Michael Jordan should consider drafting one for the Bobcats—it couldn't be any worse than Adam Morrison.
Polar Bear Dribbling a Basketball
Sometimes you read a headline that is so perfect, it doesn't even seem right to say anything else. So when it comes to this baller polar bear, I yield the floor to Buzzfeed:
"Look At This Polar Bear Dribbling A Basketball Underwater! LOOK AT HIM!"
OK...I may have added the Kanye caps lock at the end, but that's how I'd say it in person. This video made the rounds on the web last week, and it is nothing short of perfection.
Like a s'more you can take a shower with. [Thanks for that analogy, Jack Donaghy]
Dog Is Better at Volleyball Than You
OK, maybe this Golden Retriever isn't better at volleyball than you—I really don't want to get a bunch of hate mail from weirdos telling me how amazing they are at volleyball—but it's certainly better than me.
Before she even gets a chance at the ball, you can actually tell by the way Summer (her name) is standing by the pool, focused and eager for her turn, that she's probably going to be awesome at it.
Well…I expected that either she'd be great at volleyball, or she'd take advantage of the situation and just run off with the ball. Probably because if it was one of my dogs, they definitely would've taken off with the ball and played keep-away for the next 30 minutes.
Otter Shooting Hoops
Forget the Aleve, at the Oregon Zoo an arthritic southern sea otter named Eddie exercises his aching elbows by shooting hoops. Which is the most adorable arthritis treatment ever.
At 15 years old, he is definitely well into his golden years, as the typical otter in the wild only lives to 10 or 12—although they've been known to live as long as 25 years in captivity.
Eddie became a viral sensation after the zoo posted the video in February 2013. Apparently, he's been training for awhile now, but took to the game like a…uh…otter to water?
Pine Marten Wants to Play Too
In March 2013 a pine marten made a mad dash for the pitch at a Swiss Super League match. Maybe he wanted to get in on the game, or maybe he was just a drunk fan looking for his moment in the spotlight.
Either way…Zurich defender Loris Benito probably shouldn't have intervened. It can be tempting to stand up and attempt to be the man when all the men around you are scurrying away like little babies.
On one hand, Benito's actions were commendable. On the other hand, he did get a very nasty bite from a very nasty weasel-like creature. You really don't want to mess with the weasel family.
Kangaroos Steal the Show at the Australian Open
What's it take to make an LPGA tournament exciting and worth watching? How about a massive marsupial invasion on the fairway, holding everything up while they just screw around!
That's what happened at the Australian Open in February 2013. Well over a dozen kangaroos randomly hopped onto the course, interrupting players around the ninth hole.
The kangaroos caused a short delay, but they were much friendlier than the Black Widow spider, which invaded the tournament and bit a golfer earlier in the week.
Someone should've given the 'roos a club—it looks like they just want to play some golf.
Lion Legit Loves Playing Soccer
This video was uploaded by employees at the Johannesburg Zoo in South Africa about two years ago. The video stars a male white lion named Triton, who is unlike all the other lions at the zoo.
Triton is different in that he loves to play soccer, while rest of the lions prefer to do absolutely nothing. Which is actually pretty typical—they generally just eat…sleep…sleep some more…eat…sleep.
Especially the males, who don't even hunt for food.
Unlike other big cats, lions don't normally engage in large-scale versions of play associated with house cats. And, unlike tigers, they really don't like water. But Triton obviously marches to the beat of his own drummer.
Triton goes crazy when the zookeeper throws a soccer ball in his enclosure and even kicks it into the water himself and chases it.
Crazy Dog Wants to Race with the Big Boys
Anyone who has a dog knows what scene-stealing nut jobs they can be. They tend to suffer from terribly bloated self-esteem and are chronic bad decision-makers—particularly little dogs.
Which explains the last-minute addition to this horse race in Gloucestershire, England back in March 2011. Right around the 37-second mark, you'll notice a competitor that is slightly smaller than the other racers.
At first I thought it was a crazy tiny dog run amok, but then I realized it just looked tiny because it was running with horses! It's actually a sizable German Shepard on the track…and he's definitely not losing.
Turkey Trio Plays Soccer
You'll notice the title of the video describes these Texas turkeys playing soccer as "***Super Funny***." I assure you that the uploader is not overselling it. Turkeys rarely do anything particularly entertaining—in fact, more often than not, they're just scary.
I grew up in Western Pennsylvania where there are literally turkeys everywhere, including major roadways downtown and pretty much all over my college campus. [Which was the University of Pittsburgh, in case you were wondering] So trust me on this one.
But it seems not all turkeys are scary and shockingly combative! This trio of fun-loving fowl know how to have a good time on the farm by kicking back…and occasionally kicking around a very strangely-colored soccer ball together.
Husky's NCAA Tournament Walk-on
In June 2013, an NCAA Tournament baseball game between Cal-State Fullerton and Arizona State was interrupted by a very stately-looking husky, which Deadspin accurately described as the "cutest idiot on the field ever."
It's unclear where the dog came from, but he wandered onto Goodwin Field in the second inning and happily made his way around a couple of bases before heading out toward the bullpen. For a moment it looked like he may cozy up to one of the players, but wagged his tail and jetted off at the last second.
The husky couldn't have possibly looked more pleased with itself while running around, eliciting cheers from an obviously delighted audience. Eventually, he headed out through the gate in left field, which had been opened just for him.
King for a day...
Fox Fancies a Trot at a Rugby Match
You'll notice when a dog runs onto a field of any sort, people aren't generally too weary of approaching it and shooing it away in some fashion. With a fox, it's a completely different story.
The fox in this video was making his rounds on the field prior to a rugby match in Scotland in March 2011, and you'll notice no one is eager to step up and play the hero.
They're not especially dangerous creatures, but rather skittish and unpredictable. The video doesn't show how the event played out, but I suspect it ended when the fox got bored and left.
Dog REALLY Doesn't Want to Leave Baseball Game
This video is proof that if dogs were human, most of them would be the dude that is always last to leave a party. The guy that, if he leaves at all, you're likely to find passed out on your porch the next morning.
At a minor league baseball game in April 2010, this hilarious dog was featured as the "Iams Adoptable Pet of the Game." He was walked around for a bit and then walked off by his handler.
He enjoyed the spotlight so much that he quickly broke free and made a beeline back into it…where he promptly took a poop around centerfield. Pleased as punch, he joyfully runs off again after concluding his bowel movement.
Eventually, the dog is caught by his overmatched handler, who received a "friendly" bite on the hand for his for his troubles. I can't imagine the shelter ever sent a boy to do a man's job again.
Cardinals Rally Squirrel
The Cardinals' famous—or infamous, if you ask the Phillies—rally squirrel showed up out of nowhere at Busch Stadium in the fifth inning of Game 4 of the NLDS in October 2011.
The fancy-tailed rodeo romped over home plate with the home team at bat, a game which St. Louis would go on to win 5-3. They went on to win the series and the World Series that year.
The squirrel may not have gotten to actually play in the game, but he did end up on the Cards' World Series rings!
Perhaps envious of his fame, squirrels have been showing up at baseball games pretty routinely in the last few years.
Elephant Is the Best Dunker Ever
The person who uploaded this video in October 2012 described it as: "This elephant made the best slam dunks in NBA history!! Executes a perfect 360-degree slam dunk!!!"
Which is just really funny in that I don't think the humor translates entirely.
That being said, this elephant really can dunk and she looks more graceful doing it than Shaquille O'Neal did later in his career. I bet she's always picked first in gym.
Oh—and elephants are also pretty good at soccer, which they probably play in grade school before moving on to a cooler sport.
**Speaking of humor that doesn't translate, you should follow me on Twitter: Follow @blamberr