Kyoto and Nara

Are Nara park deer dangerous? How to avoid injuries from deer attack.

Posted:14/04/2019 Updated:


Are Nara park deer dangerous?


The number of accidents with deer is increasing every year. In 2018, there were 209 injury reports which are about 4 times more than in 2013. 8 of them were pretty serious such as broken back, and 5 people out of 8 were visitors from overseas.

The number of visitors to Nara is also increasing, so it is not because the deers are getting more aggressive and harmful. But you wouldn’t want to get attacked by deer and upset your holiday. So why not to find out how to avoid an accident and have a safe happy time with deer.

You need to remember they are wild animals.

These deer are used to people feeding them, that means they don’t run away when you go closer. But don’t forget that they are not trained pets and could bite you or kick you when they are frustrated or scared of you.

What kind of people are attacked?

There is a fact that the people selling deer cracker at the park never attacked by deer. Why? because deer don’t underestimate them.

So what kind of people are looked down by deer?

Little children.

You can’t do anything about it, but deer feel that they are stronger when they are simply bigger than you.

Avoid contact with deer by children. It can be very dangerous as children could be knocked over easily. If your kids want to feed the deer, adults must supervise them close by.

Don’t be overly scared of deer.

Like other wild animals, deer sense they are stronger than people who are scared of them. They think they can get food from you if they scare you.

They might chase you if you walk backward or run away. Walk like you are not looking at them. If you don’t disturb them, they won’t attack you.


The things you shouldn’t do for your own safety.

What would upset deer and make them become aggressive to you? You need to avoid doing these things when you are close to deer.

Avoid male deer.

Males are bigger in size and not scared of people. They might come to your deer crackers pushing away other deer. They are more aggressive too. If you see two males fighting, do not go close and get involved.

They especially attack between September to November when it is mating season.

In Nara Park, they cut deer horns on the long weekend in October, although the horns grow back from spring to summer. They look good in summer to autumn with the horns but it is more dangerous.

Don’t go close to a mother with children.

Female deer gets aggressive when they have a newborn child around mid-May to July. Baby deer are cute, but the mother gets nervous of you easily and could attack you.

Don’t tease them with deer cracker.

Most accidents happen when feeding deer crackers, especially because you tease them too much. Deer bowing means they are hustling you to feed them, and they are not that patient.

If you think you don’t have enough crackers, break them into half and give half at the time. But don’t break the cracker into too small sizes and get bitten when you feed them.

Don’t harm them.

You know you shouldn’t attack them, but it could happen unintentionally when deer come to you too close.

Some visitors try to take a photo with them pretending to be sitting on them, when the deer are relaxed and sitting down. This can make the deer feel unsafe, and you could get attacked.

You can touch them when they are not scared of you, but if they behave like they don’t want to be touched, leave them alone and find another friendly one.

Female deer without a child, weaned young deer without their mother are easier to touch, especially when they are sitting down.

Do the Nara deer have any disease?

The deer are wild and haven’t been immunised for any diseases. There are no reports about humans infected by deer at Nara Park, and even if you have got bitten by deer you don’t need to do anything special.

You can talk to the consultation team for Nara park’s deer on 0742 26 7755 for advise if concerned.


-Kyoto and Nara

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