Dog Nurses Tiger Cubs In Adorable Viral Photo From Russia

In animal news, a dog nurses tiger cubs after they were abandoned by their mother, creating an adorable photo of maternal love that has gone viral on the internet.

The two Siberian tiger cubs were abandoned in Russia by their mother, but the maternal-minded dog took over, The Associated Press reported. The dog nurses the tiger cubs and cares for them as if they were her own, zoo workers said of the unlikely pairing.

The cubs were born in late May in a zoo located in the Black Sea resort of Sochi. After the mother tiger abandoned the cubs, the dog — a wrinkled, sand-colored Shar Pei named Cleopatra — sprang into action, taking in the tiger cubs and nursing them.

“She accepted them right away,” said zoo assistant director Viktoria Kudlayeva said in a telephone interview. “She’s cleaning them and breast feeding them as if they were her own. And they also sleep together.”

Kudlayeva said that the tiger cubs have already started showing their claws and hissing but pose no danger to their new adopted dog mother.

“They aren’t aggressive and they depend on her for feeding,” she said.

The photo where the dog nurses the tiger cubs is reminiscent of another maternal pairing from China. Another set of tiger cubs there were abandoned by their mother in a wildlife preserve. Workers there brought in a dog to help nurse the quadruplets, which included one white tiger and three snow tigers, The Huffington Post noted.

While the dog nurses the tiger cubs in Russia, zoo members also make sure that they are supplemented with goat’s milk as well.

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