A 3-year-old mother dog adopted an interesting addition to her litter: an orphaned kitten.
When the black dog arrived at the Jackson County Animal Shelter, she was pregnant and scared of people. The original plan was to move her into a foster home, but shelter officials decided to move her into the office to help her acclimate to her surroundings.
Soon enough, Kela the dog got comfortable at the shelter and gave birth to 10 healthy puppies.
A few days later, an abandoned male kitten was dropped off at the shelter and brought to the back offices for a vet exam and bottle. When Kela heard the cries from the tiny animal in the next room, she began scratching at the office door.
When a staff member opened the door, Kela instantly ran over to the sweet kitten.
“She stuck her head right in the box,” said Lydia Sattler, the shelter’s animal services director. “I went and picked up the kitten, not knowing what Kela was doing. She tried to take him out of my hand and would not take her eyes off him. She also would not leave the kitten to go back to her puppies.”
Sattler figured it would be best to place the newly arrived kitten with Kela’s litter in the other room so Kela could be near her pups, too.
“As soon as the kitten was added to the puppy pile, she instantly laid down and started cleaning him,” Sattler told news. “He (the kitten) is so content to be cleaned, warm, and snuggled. We haven’t heard him cry since!”
Now the orphaned kitten has a new mom who watches and nurses him. He will no longer have to worry about going hungry, thanks to Kela’s kindness.
The relationships animals have with one another are a great reminder of their ability to feel love, comfort, and attachment just like humans can.
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UPDATE (4/19/2023): Lady Freethinker has learned from news reports that this kitten tragically has died, likely from a genetic complication, despite the caring actions of the shelter staff and this sweet mama dog – who still needs her forever home. We are saddened by the kitten’s passing but grateful that in his last moments he was valued and loved.