There’s nothing more heartwarming than seeing a mother dog nursing her babies. But sometimes, they are so gentle, that would accept to nurse other species of animals too. If your first thought was kittens, you were close enough… This mother dog in China gave birth to a litter exactly at the same time when two mother tigers gave birth to their tiger cubs. But then, the staff at the Xixiakou Zoo saw that the mother tigers didn’t want to feed their babies…
So, this dog gave a helping paw!
20. Bengal Tigers
At the Xixiakou Nature Reserve in Rongcheng, Shandong Province, everyone was happy that two Bengal tigers were expecting babies. But soon after giving birth on 7 and 10 June, the mothers stopped feeding their babies…
19. A Few Days After…
Both Bengal tiger mothers were five years old and they just didn’t seem interested in nursing anymore. The staff at the Nature Reserve had to do something to keep the babies alive and healthy. Then, they heard of a different mommy!
18. A Helping Paw
When the staff saw that the mothers didn’t want to tend to their cubs, zookeepers found a way around it. They have done this before and now they hoped it would work again…
17. It Happened Before
This isn’t the first time zookeepers have made pooches babysit kittens. Five years before these four cubs were born, a pair of ligers (lion and tiger cross) were also nursed by a mother dog after the mother tiger stopped nursing.
16. A Little Wary
After a few days spent with their mother tiger, she stopped nursing her babies, so the zookeepers found a mother dog and she accepted them. Although the ligers were a bit scared at the beginning, they finally latched!
15. This Time It Was Different
Some zookeepers would spread dog urine on tiger cubs to make them smell like the mother’s puppies, but this gentle mother accepted them without any problem. So what they smelled different? They needed some milk!
14. Feeding Time
Alongside her puppies, the mother dog fed the four tigers as well. And by looking at her face, she seems quite happy! Who wouldn’t be, with so many babies to lick and cuddle? Dogs are the best babysitters!
13. Sharing the Love
The mother dog took the tiger cubs and gave them love and her milk. She licked them and let them meow around her little puppies. The heart-melting images have made it on the internet and everyone is in awe of them!
12. So Many Colors!
If you’re wondering what’s with the different colors, you’re going to have a surprise. All cubs are Bengal tigers. Two of them are a very rare species called Strawberry tigers – also known as Golden Tabby because of their golden fur. The others have lost some color…
11. White and Snow-White
The other two tiger cubs are white and snow-white. And they are all amazingly cute! The shade of their fur is because of the genetic mutations. The golden tabby tigers are an endangered species.
10. Preserving the Species
All lives matter, and these baby tigers’ lives are even more special because they are endangered species. Preserving the species is very important, and if all the newborn babies get to live a healthy life and procreate, it’s a great step!
9. Around the World
These pictures of newborn cubs suckling from the mother dog have made it around the world, spreading thoughts and feelings of love among everyone. Many people have reacted to them, saying it’s an inspiring act of love.
8. Everyone Wants to See Them
The tiger cubs have just opened their eyes and people in the Shandong Province are eager to see the fluffy family. But it’s too soon for visitors! These babies are now under the great care of their handlers!
7. Taking Good Care
Both the handlers and the dog mommy take good care of the baby tigers and the two puppies are also there, all a big fluffy family! There are no words to describe the feeling of joy when baby animals get saved…
6. The Strawberry Tigers
All of these baby tigers will grow bigger than an average Bengal Tiger. That’s because of their special genes. They will also have a thicker and a softer fur.
5. They Are Very Intelligent
The strawberry tigers are much more intelligent, making them ideal kitties for zoos, who value them! You won’t believe how many of these kitties are out there in the world…
4. White Tigers
The strawberry tigers also carry the gene for white tigers, so when two strawberry tigers mate, the offspring could be white! These rare tigers are the result of breeding in captivity and there are 30 of them around the world.
3. The White Tigers – The Bleached Tigers
The white fur variation is also known as the bleached tiger, as it doesn’t have the usual color of a Bengal. Sometimes, the tigers have black stripes or brown stripes. They are white because they lack pigmentation.
The snow-white Bengal tigers are a result of inbreeding, causing the offspring’s fur to be pure white, with no stripes. Both parents must carry the gene for white coloring. But there are also special cases…
1. A Very Rare Baby
Sometimes, one in 100 tigers is born white, even though the parents have black tiger stripes. All over the world, there are only 20 snow white tigers! It’s so amazing to see all of these babies, each having a special trait and a very special mommy!