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The dog that saved the big cats

By The Siberian Times reporter
30 October 2017

Persian leopard cubs rejected by their mother Alyona but they are saved by golden retriever Tessi.

Tessi the dog stepped in and she feeds them alongside her four puppies. Pictures and video: Sadgorod

Without the foster mother it is likely the cubs would have died. 

The mother at Sadgorod in Vladivostok rejected her two cubs possibly because she herself was born in a zoo.

Tessi the dog stepped in and she feeds them alongside her four puppies. 

Zoo co-owner Alyona Asnovina said: 'We tried to feed them ourselves, but they sucked very badly and we had to urgently search for a feeding mom. 

'We tried to feed them ourselves, but they sucked very badly and we had to urgently search for a feeding mom.'

'We found a great foster mom in golden retriever Tessi.

'She gave birth recently to four nice puppies and has a lot of milk. 

'Many thanks to the owner, we would have had hard times without Tessi.'

Sadly one kitten is very weak with a congenital heart and lung defect according to X-ray and ultrasound. 

Leopard kitten


Mother-dog puppies and kittens


Mother-dog and kittens


Mother-dog and kittens


Mother-dog and kittens


Mother-dog and kittens

'The dynamic is very positive - the baby is gaining weight, she is actively trying to play.'

'I do not know if she will survive or not. We hope for the best.'

Zoo vet Viktor Agafonov is more optimistic,

'For three weeks the dog has been feeding this female kitten. 

'The dynamic is very positive - the baby is gaining weight, she is actively trying to play.

'She bites her adoptive mother and feels very well.' 

Comments (1)

Adorable. Tessi is a good Mum, all her children are healthy.
Leopard kitten are lively ..
Jocelyne, FRANCE
03/11/2017 22:17
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