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African wild dogs are endangered animals that love a fresh kill. Pixabay, public domain

How do you scare away a couple of cheetahs and steal their meal? For this pack of African wild dogs, jumping around and seemingly laughing in a taunting chorus does the trick.

The wild dogs at South Africa’s Pilanesberg National Park take the cheetahs’ freshly killed wildebeest right out from under them (video below). National Geographic noted cheetahs are the fastest land mammal but they shy away from fights, so having their food stolen is not a rare occurrence.

“Cheetahs are wimps,” biologist Luke Dollar told the magazine. “They’re not particularly robust when it comes to confronting any of the similarly sized predators that are out there.”

The African wild dogs, also known as painted dogs, have about half the weight of a cheetah but they are powerful when they hunt in their packs, which can range from several dogs to more than 20. National Geographic said they are so smart and coordinated, they manage to catch and kill about 80 percent of their prey, mostly antelopes.

Read: This New Extinct Species Is Distantly Related to Dogs

They also sometimes sound like squeaky dog toys or some sort of alien from a science-fiction horror movie when they run together.

It’s a vocalization that has similarities to some of the whooping sounds spotted hyenas make — even though hyenas are not related to dogs and actually have more in common with cats, Live Science noted.

If their sounds weren’t scary enough, African wild dogs eat ravenously: “They go from catching their prey, which is still alive when they start devouring it, to there being nothing left of it in 2 minutes or less,” Dollar said.

Although cheetahs are known for being fast, wild dogs can be speedy too. The World Wildlife Fund said the animals, which weigh 40 to 70 pounds, can sprint faster than 44 mph.

But they are endangered — the WWF said there are only about 6,600 of the wild dogs left, with most of them in southern Africa.

The cheetah also is vulnerable. The spotted cats number only about 7,500 in the wild, the African Wildlife Foundation said. Like the painted dogs, they are also at their most plentiful in southern and eastern Africa.

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