They say opposites attract, and it seems that couldn’t be truer for our four-legged friends. Indeed, we could learn a thing or two from our loyal companions who look beyond a wet nose and a fluffy tail to find friendship in the most unexpected places. In a list featuring everything from apes to raccoons, here are ten canines and their curious companions who prove that love in the animal kingdom really is blind.
10. Toffee & Pumpkin
Say hello to unlikely Instagram stars Toffee and Pumpkin. Both rescues, Toffee the dog is a Royal Bahamian Potcake while Pumpkin is Bahamian raccoon; it’s a relationship that totally shouldn’t work, but it does. In fact, since the moment an orphaned Pumpkin was rescued and taken to live with Toffee and his family, this unorthodox pair have shared a special bond.
You see, Pumpkin’s parents abandoned her after she tumbled out of a tree and broke her leg. Toffee’s owner found her and decided to take her home. From that day on, Toffee took it upon himself to care for Pumpkin, encouraging her to walk and helping her when she fell. Fast-forward to today, and there’s even an Instagram account to document this furry friendship. Spoiler alert: it’s adorable. The pair now have 1.5 million followers, but, luckily, fame hasn’t affected their relationship.
9. Moose & Juniper
Meet Moose (left) and Juniper (right), possibly the most photogenic animal duo you’ll find on the internet. Juniper’s Instagram account – which has over 2 million followers, surely making Juniper the world’s most famous fox – is an irresistible collection of snaps featuring these best friends grinning, playing dress up, and generally adoring each other. But don’t think it’s all just an act for the cameras.
In fact, this fox and hound have been best friends since the first day they met. When North American Red Fox Juniper was adopted at just five weeks old, Moose, the family’s Australian Shepherd mix, immediately took her under his paw. And now they’re completely obsessed with each other. And, to be honest, we’re completely obsessed with them, too.
8. Henry & Baloo
Next up are Henry and Baloo, a dog-cat duo living the dream and exploring the world together. Their favorite pastimes include hiking, camping, and Henry using Baloo as a hat. Henry is a rare mixture of Husky, Australian Shepherd, Boxer, and Staffordshire Terrier. Meanwhile, Baloo, his feline friend, is a beautiful Siamese mix.
According to the pair’s website – yes, they have their own website – this adorable couple were adopted by their humans as they wanted some pets to join in on their life of travel and adventure. Mountain dog Henry instantly took to the outdoor life, as did Baloo, who got his name from the adventurous bear featured in The Jungle Book. Currently, these paw-fect pals are roaming around Colorado. Er, is it weird want to trade lives with a dog and a cat?
7. Theo & Beau
It all started when one mom began posting pictures on her parenting blog of her little son, Beau, and their new puppy, Theo, snoozing side by side. Soon these enchanting snapshots were capturing the hearts of internet users worldwide, and it wasn’t long before these “brothers” became a viral sensation. It’s easy to see why.
Theo was adopted from an animal shelter as a puppy, and he and Beau formed an instant connection. As Beau’s mom, Jessica Shyba, explained on her Momma’s Gone City blog in 2013, Theo “was the shyest of [the shelter puppies] to meet us, though he bounded instantly into Beau’s lap. The look on his little furry face was enough to seal the deal for me, we had met our newest family member.” Indeed, this lovable duo are proof that you don’t need four legs to be the perfect canine companion.
6. Roscoe & Suryia
These cheeky chums are Roscoe, a Blue Tick hound, and Suryia, an orangutan. Theirs is a truly remarkable tale of animal friendship. Indeed, dogs and primates don’t usually get along, but this unlikely pair immediately took to each other after a chance meeting at TIGERS, a preservation center for endangered animals in South Carolina.
Roscoe, a stray, had followed TIGERS staff back to the center. Suryia spotted the dog’s wagging tail and rushed over to say hello. An astonished staff member watched as they began playing together. Now the soulmates hang out every day; they play, swim and sometimes even hitch a ride on the center’s resident African elephant, Bubbles. Suryia also likes to take his canine friend for walks, and, when he’s feeling generous, might share his monkey biscuits with him.
5. Lily & Mr Beau Jangles
They say opposites attract, right? Well, that’s certainly the case for this peculiar-looking pairing. Boxer, Lily, was going about her life when one day she was faced with a rather unusual addition to the family: Beau, known as Mr Beau Jangles, an 11-year-old Cockatoo, who’s got a bit of a wild side. Yet somehow, Lily and Beau learned to love each other.
Indeed, this troublesome twosome get up to all sorts of shenanigans. Mischievous Beau likes to steal Lily’s food when she’s not looking, or swoop down and land on her head, which doesn’t always go down well. But, despite their differences, these two have formed a surprising bond; it’s one of those love-hate relationships, y’know?
4. Lincoln & Wilbur
Introducing Lincoln the Basset Hound and Wilbur “The Baconator,” two larger-than-life characters who’ve forged an unexpected friendship. After all, it’s not every day that you see a canine and a pig having a good old cuddle. But this hog and hound ended up being the perfect match.
A fun fact about Wilbur? He was actually sold to his owners as a “micro” pig, which turned out to be somewhat false advertising. But Lincoln never judged him for it, and now this pot-bellied pair can’t get enough of each other. Their mom says that Wilbur and Lincoln are great chums, except when it comes to food, and then it’s every animal for themselves. Well, that doesn’t sound so different from our own human friendships…
3. Kago & Kumbali
A Labrador puppy and a cheetah cub who are soulmates – does it get more adorable than that? We don’t think so. These four-legged friends are Kago, part Lab, and Kumbali, a furry little cheetah from Metro Richmond Zoo in Virginia. If you think they look cute, the story behind their extraordinary friendship will really melt your heart.
As the runt, Kumabli was separated from his family to be bottle fed at just two weeks old. He was lonely and in need of a companion, and that’s where Kago came in. According to Metro Richmond Zoo, dog-cheetah bonds can be positive. In fact, cheetahs learn a lot from their canine companions. And rescue pup Kago, with his calm but fun-loving nature, was the perfect match for Kumabli. Today, they’re best friends and like to run, jump and play together. And, you’ll be happy to know, they plan to stay together for ever.
2. Drake & Jerry
This doe-eyed duo are Drake and Jerry, and theirs is a very special tale. When a lamb called Jerry was born, no one wanted him. He was smaller and weaker than his brothers and sisters, and so his mom turned him away. The farmer didn’t want the effort of raising him either, so he gave him away. And that’s how Jerry came to meet Drake.
Drake’s mom, Megan Mostacci, took Jerry in to live with them at her animal sanctuary. But the little lamb was sick and needed a lot of looking after. And Drake, a Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever, was determined to do just that. “He was cleaning him, cuddling with him… just being there with him,” Mostacci told The Dodo in March 2018. Soon, Jerry recovered, but their bond remained just as strong. In fact, little Jerry now sees Drake as his mom. “Most lambs sleep on top of their mamas,” Mostacci explained. “And Jerry does this with Drake.” Does it get any sweeter than that?
1. Fred & Ducklings
Duck, duck, duck… dog? Introducing yellow Lab and foster-father-of-nine, Fred. That’s right, this Labrador became an unlikely father to nine orphaned ducklings found waddling around Mountfitchet Castle in Essex, U.K., after their mother was killed by a fox. Alone and too small to look after themselves, the baby birds were taken in by castle staff and ten-year-old Fred has stepped up as their protector ever since.
“Fred has got an absolutely wonderful nature. [The ducklings] absolutely love him,” Jeremy Goldsmith, director of the castle and Fred’s owner, told the Daily Mail in May 2018. It turns out the little ducklings like to line up on Fred’s back and go for a ride, and they even follow him into the castle moat for a swim. Well, it seems Fred’s taken to his new role of father like a duck to water!