Dogs are incredibly intelligent animals with great instincts. Lighten your mood today and check out these stories of dogs who gained family members without having their own pups. One of the amazing things about dogs is their ability to step in and save the day. Motherhood among animals is just as vital as it is among human beings. Mothers help us grow, learn and develop over time. Here are a few light-hearted stories of dogs adopting other animals that needed a mother.

Tiger Cubs

The Cincinnati Zoo recently called for a dog to come in and play the role of a “nanny” to three baby Malayan tigers. The cubs’ mother tiger didn’t have the maternal instincts needed to provide proper care for them. The zoo brought in Blakely, a 6 year old male Australian Shepherd, to care for the cubs and offer cuddling, warmth and care. This is not the first time that Blakely has stepped in to care for animals and offer guidance. Blakely has also aided in raising baby cheetahs, wallabies, bat-eared foxes and more.


This story is not the only, nor the first story of dogs taking over a maternal role for kittens. Lilo the husky adopted a kitten that most likely wouldn’t have made it otherwise. Rosie the kitten needed special attention so Lilo came in and adopted her. Lilo acts as a mother to Rosie and even stimulated natural instincts and mother dog would with her pups. The two are now inseparable and even enjoy trips to the park together. Although Rosie may be a kitten, she has even picked up on some natural dog instincts that she learned from her dog mother Lilo.  


Two pit bulls living in Australia with their owners had an interesting foster relationship with two ducklings. The Stoll family fosters dogs as well as owning four forever dogs, including the two pit bulls. Pikelet Butterwoll and Patty Cakes Huckleberry are the two rescued pit bulls owned by the Stolls. The family had agreed to foster two ducklings, where Pikelet and Patty Cakes came in as foster parents. The ducklings, named Penguin and Popinjay warmed up to their furry foster dogs quickly and smoothly, just as any other foster puppy would.


A more unusual story is that of a mother dog who adopted abandoned possum pups. A litter of orphaned possums lost their mother due to a dog attack. At such a young age, the possums needed a pouch of warmness to survive. The woman to decided to care for the possums brought her dog Pretinha into the picture. Pretinha cuddled and cared for the possums just as a mother dog would with her pups and provided every maternal instinct other than feeding, which the owner was able to nurse them instead. The possums grew happily and healthy thanks to the maternal care of their dog mom.


It’s amazing how dogs can raise and nurture other animals aside from their own pups. Motherhood is often necessary for the survival of newborn animals. Dogs can take on maternal instincts when raising young animals in an amazing way.