This animal might look like a harmless, big-eyed baby ewok, but the slow loris is one of the only venomous mammals in the world. Its subtle nature makes it popular in the illegal pet trade, but this furry creature also carries a toxin that is released from the brachial gland on the sides of its elbows. If threatened, the loris can take the toxin into its mouth and mix it with saliva. The animal may also lick or rub its hair with this mixture to deter predators from attack. The toxin can cause death by anaphylactic shock in some people.
With the animal’s bite, hiss-like noises, sinuous moves, and even the way it defensively raises its arms above its head the loris might have evolved to mimic the cobra. Researchers also suggest that the slow loris’s markings resemble those of the snake.
There are anecdotes of people who have gone into anaphylactic shock after getting nipped — though, granted, it’s only potentially deadly news if you have allergies. But even if you’re not allergic, a slow loris bite is unpleasant. Its teeth are incredibly sharp, and the venom emits a nasty smell, “worse than a whole box of rotten eggs.”