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Pets & Animals
An otter and a kitten, a kangaroo and wombat and a monkey and a rabbit — just a few best buddy pairs that make some very odd couples.
A lonley, 4-month-old piglet was given to the St Francis Animal Welfare Shelter in Fair Oak, England by a family who could no longer care for her. Since then, the pint-sized Coco has become firm friends with German Shepherd Jay. The piglet is convinced she is a dog, and walks on a leash, fetches sticks and guards the other dogs. "Jay has taken her under her paw so to say and protects her when they run around together in the field," said center manager Sueltan Day.
This 11-week-old ocelot kitten, Santos, and his furry dog companion, Blakely, became best friends at Cincinnati Zoo in Ohio. Santos was born at the end of last year but has been moved to Cincinnati's nursery after his mother didn't produce enough milk. Blakely resides in the Cincinnati Zoo's nursery and is a companion dog to a wide variety of baby animals that come into the nursery for various reasons. The zoo says they spend time together almost every day by burning off energy during the cold winter months.
A duckling and 6-week-old Kookaburra, nicknamed Kookie, have developed an unusual bond after both being orphaned at birth. Kookie had to be saved by staff at the Seaview Wildlife Encounter after his parents killed their other two offspring. The rare 2-day-old duckling was rescued from one of the park's aviaries because he was too small to defend himself against larger birds.
When Busch Gardens in Tampa, Fla. took in a cheetah cub that had been neglected by its mother, the park’s animal care team became inspired and paired the 8-week-old cat with a 16-week-old female yellow Labrador. A little over a year later, the two animals are the best of friends. They spend lots of supervised play time together and help the Busch Gardens’ education team teach the public about the plight of cheetahs in the wild.
A Harrisburg, Pennsylvania resident reports that her cat has struck up a special friendship with the neighboring wildlife, according to Lovemeow.com. Every morning, a local deer visits the cat, who reciprocates by grooming the much larger animal. The deer expresses its affection by licking the friendly feline.
At the Shamwari Game Reserve, a baby elephant and sheep have become the best of pals. Eight-month-old orphan Themba the elephant struck up a friendship with wooly Albert after arriving at the reserve's animal hospital when he was just 6 months old. Themba's mum had fallen off a cliff and died at the Sanbona Wildlife Reserve, where Themba was born.
BoonLua, a long-tailed macaque, lives with Toby, a rabbit, in Thailand. BoonLua lost both its legs and one arm during an attack by dogs three years ago. It dragged itself to a nearby temple where it received medical treatment and survived. He now lives in a custom built enclosure with the rabbit.
Three is company
A wild boar piglet named Schnitzel shares a bottle of milk with a Jack Russel terrier, Doro, and a ridgeback, Lilli, in Wiblingwerde, Germany. Schnitzel was left behind when farmer Heiko Cordt tried to chase away a herd of wild boars out of a friend's garden. Cordt now raises the piglet with his five dogs.