Massive Bear Spots A Cat In Her Enclosure And Makes A Move That Defies The Laws Of Nature

The laws of nature are often unkind to tiny animals that come across larger, fiercer creatures. When an apex predator discovers defenseless prey in the wild, there’s no denying the hierarchy of the food chain—and the results are far from pretty.

A situation like this occurred at the Berlin Zoo with an 800-pound bear who found a small cat in her enclosure one morning. Employees and bystanders helplessly watched in suspense, but what the massive bear did next wasn’t what anyone expected…

In 2000, Berlin Zoo employees were shocked and confused when they saw a small cat named Muschi roaming the enclosed home of an Asiatic bear named Mäuschen.

Mäuschen was one of the most popular animals at the Berlin Zoo. Her size and strength were well known among staff and visitors alike. 

The cat was first seen early one morning by an employee while they were making sure Mäuschen had enough food. They were startled when they saw the cat inside sitting on one of the tree branches. 

Once Mäuschen the bear noticed the little cat in her domain, things quickly changed. As Mäuschen began to slowly approach her, the tiny feline jumped down onto the ground…

To everyone’s surprise, Mäuschen was instantly smitten with her small new friend—whom workers named Muschi—and the two quickly became inseparable. However, that wasn’t the strangest part…

In 2007, the Berlin Zoo decided to expand Mäuschen’s enclosure. This meant that Mäuschen and Muschi needed to be separated while construction was happening, which posed quite an odd reaction between the two.

Mäuschen and Muschi actually became visibly upset by the new arrangement! Zoo workers felt terrible keeping these new pals apart – Muschi would even sit outside Mäuschen’s cage and cry all night.

Finally, after the renovations on Mäuschen’s new enclosure were complete, the two animals were reunited. Their rekindled friendship quickly began to draw some serious attention…

Visitors from everywhere came to watch the unique relationship between the unlikely pair develop. But where did Muschi even come from in the first place?

The origin of Muschi was unknown, but more mysterious was the reason behind her attraction to Mäuschen. Workers said it felt as though the two were meant to meet.

Mäuschen and Muschi are a reminder that, despite our differences, friendships can bloom anywhere! But they’re actually not the only unlikely zoo pair around…

Oddly enough, the friendship that formed at the Berlin Zoo wasn’t the first time a massive bear befriended a teeny feline. The same thing happened at the Folsom City Zoo sanctuary in California.

A black cat, whom workers named Little Bear, suddenly appeared in the zoo’s bear enclosure. Of course, people were immediately worried for the cat’s well-being, but the two species seemed to actually enjoy each other’s company.

The cat would sneak in every morning and eat the food the zoo workers left out for the massive bears. When they realized what she was doing, they started leaving cat food for her, as well.

Jill Faust, the senior lead zookeeper at Folsom City Zoo, had never seen anything like it before in her life. Although the pair was highly unusual, Jill wanted her workers to foster the relationship as best they could.

Little Bear took a particular interest in one of the zoo’s largest animals: a 550-pound black bear named Sequoia. Though she had never been very aggressive, the workers still had to look out for the cat’s safety.

One of the benefits of having Little Bear around was that she actually increased foot traffic at the sanctuary. People came from all over to witness the unusual, but adorable, friendship the two animals formed.

For most of the day, Little Bear simply reclined in the shade provided by the enclosure’s trees, watching as her pal Sequoia and the other bears went about their business. It was like she was one of them!

Little Bear loved all the attention she got from visitors. She felt as comfortable at the zoo as any other animal would, despite hanging around creatures so large.

From day one, Little Bear acted as if she belonged right there in the bears’ enclosure. Like Muschi and Mäuschen, this feline-ursine pair was almost too adorable to handle!

These friends have already gotten through so much, there’s no doubt their bond will continue to strengthen as time goes by. It’s incredible to witness just how two completely different creatures can make such a connection, and it’s not even just bears… 

In November 2016, a baby southern white rhino—who would come to be known as Nandi—faced an impossible situation: her mother had been killed by poachers, and at just two months old, she was completely alone and unable to fend for herself.

Given the circumstances, Nandi struggled to survive. She didn’t have a mother to show her what to eat, so the desperate baby rhino filled her belly on sand. Pending a miracle, it was clear she wouldn’t be long for the world.

Helping Rhinos

But Nandi fought long enough, and eventually, that miracle came. Rescuers came across the severely dehydrated rhino in the nick of time and rushed her to the Rhino Orphanage, a Wild Heart Wildlife Foundation-supported non-profit company in South Africa.

The Rhino Orphanage / Facebook

At the orphanage, Nandi was given milk under the watchful eye of her caretaker, Jamie Traynor. Charged with her well-being, Jamie ensured the rhino received all she needed. She even slept alongside the rhino at night! But would it be enough?

Wild Heart Wildlife Foundation / Facebook

After all, Nandi had been through a lot, and all that sand in her belly posed serious health risks. Nevertheless, if she were going to recover, the Rhino Orphanage was her best chance.

Wild Heart Wildlife Foundation

Day by day, thanks to Jamie and the Orphanage’s dedicated efforts, Nandi’s vitals improved. She started eating solid food—not sand!—and she was drinking plenty of water. She even made a few friends!

Her first friend, of course, was Jamie herself! Every day, the caretaker took the little white rhino on a walk, so the two had plenty of time to bond. But their relationship was a bit more playful, too.

Paul Oxton / YouTube

For example, Nandi loved chasing Jamie around the grounds! “She’s a little rhino with a big attitude and has given Jamie many bruises already” from playing, a Wild Heart Wildlife Foundation spokesman said. But Jamie wasn’t the only friend the rhino loved to play with…

Paul Oxton / YouTube

While Jamie may have been dubbed “The Rhino Whisperer,” she actually rescued and cared for another species of animal, too—and it was one that she would soon introduce to Nandi.

Jamie Traynor Blog

Jamie had rescued Mewie the cat when he was just a few weeks old. The cat followed her wherever Jamie went around the Rhino Orphanage, so she was bound to bump into Nandi sooner or later. But would they get along?

Sure enough, during her time spent recovering, Nandi came face-to-face with Mewie—and it didn’t take long for her to find out she had a few interests in common with the handsome feline!

“They get along pretty well because they both love to go for walks,” Jamie said. “Mewie needs to be carried back from the walks because he gets too tired!” But that was alright because then the two could participate in another favorite activity…

Wild Heart Wildlife Foundation / Facebook

Nandi and Mewie bonded over a mutual adoration for naps! But since rhinos typically only sleep about eight hours per day compared to a cat’s 12, Mewie had to clock in his additional hours on the side.

With her new friends by her side, Nandi took massive strides towards her recovery. In fact, with her general demeanor, psychology, and health trending upwards, caretakers hoped she might be able to someday return to the wild! But then there was a hiccup…

In February 2017—just a few months after Nandi’s initial rescue—poachers raided the Rhino Orphanage. They were hunting for valuable ivory tusks… and they were willing to kill to get them. As a result, Nandi was in serious danger.

Thankfully, Nandi survived the poacher attack, but Jamie knew she wouldn’t be safe at the Rhino Orphanage anymore. Complicating matters was that the orphaned rhino still wasn’t ready to be released into the wild just yet. Authorities mulled over what to do with her…

The Orphanage opted to transfer Nandi—as well as another rhino named Storm—to a more secure facility called Zululand Rhino Orphanage. In March 2017, Jamie and Mewie officially said goodbye to their friend, Nandi.

Helping Rhinos / YouTube

Though saying goodbye was sad, it was a wise decision. And thanks to Jamie’s great care and Mewie’s friendship, in May 2018, the Zululand Rhino Orphanage found Nandi fit enough to return to the wild!

Helping Rhinos / YouTube

On the day she was released, the orphaned white rhino—along with her newest friend, Storm—was nervous to leave the sheltered facility. They spent multiple days standing at the gate, unwilling to venture out into the wild on their own.

Helping Rhinos / YouTube

Eventually, though, she and Storm stepped out of the fenced-in orphanage, and for the first time in their lives, they were completely free. And it was all thanks to the friends they’d made along the way!

Helping Rhinos / YouTube

Rhinos aren’t often seen as playful animals, but then again, you haven’t seen Nandi yet! Just watch her having the time of her life as she plays with Jamie. This sure was a rhino that couldn’t be kept down for long!

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