NEW ZEALAND – An 110-pound rottweiler has happily taken on the role of father and protector of three abandoned kittens that were left to perish in Tauranga.
Luckily, the trio of kittens was found dumped under the Sandhurst overpass last week and taken to Bayfair Vets, which posted on Animals of Tauranga asking for someone to take them on.
Chelles McIntosh is the one who responded to the call for help and found her dog Bear was absolutely fascinated with the tiny bundles of fur.
The rottweiler seemed to enjoy licking two-week-old Inky, Pinky and Ponky clean each and every time they had finished a feed of milk formula.
“Bear is an absolute mother hen when it comes to babies.”
There were a total of 24 rescued hedgehogs in the hot-water cupboard and two chihuahuas sharing the family home. Ms. McIntosh had also been fostering puppies, which Bear also showed an affection for.
“He just has such a kind, loving nature about him.”
The dog trainer explained that Bear, who was also a dog blood donor, knew he was gentle “and just loves them”.
Rottweilers are naturally a protective breed and he had taken to sleeping outside the bedroom door and even alerting her when the kittens started meowing.
“He comes and finds me when they are crying. It’s just him being a typical Rottweiler that hasn’t been raised to be aggressive … and would be a wonderful mother except he doesn’t have the right bits.”
Bayfair and Papamoa Vets’ nurse Mel Bason added that during kitten season the clinic often looked after, rehomed and rehabilitated kittens but could no longer take cats despite growing demand.
“We have had quite a few wild kittens that hiss and launch at us that we have managed to tame and rehome.”
It was also quite common for different animals to take care of each other.
“People say cats and dogs hate each other but I have four dogs and three cats and they are best friends. When I grew up we had a dog that would mother. She would do everything from keeping a lamb warm to cleaning wild rabbits, ducklings or chickens.
“Licking is also natural and Bear probably quite likes the taste of it as dogs often like cat poo even though it does sound revolting.”
Once they were finally weaned off the bottle Inky, Pinky and Ponky would return to the vet clinic where a search for new homes would begin, Ms. Bason said.