An Unlikely Bond: Dog Comforts Newborn Kitten in Shelter

Dog Comforts Newborn Kitten in Shelter

Last Updated on October 14, 2023 by Fumipets

An Unlikely Bond: Dog Comforts Newborn Kitten in Shelter


In the heartwarming world of animal shelters, a story unfolded that tugged at our heartstrings. It’s a tale of compassion, unexpected motherly instincts, and the unbreakable bond between a dog and a tiny, fragile kitten. Meet Tulip, a two-year-old shelter dog living in the Homeward Bound Pet Adoption Center in Blackwood, New Jersey.

A Surprise Pregnancy

Tulip’s journey to becoming an unlikely hero began with an unexpected pregnancy. When she was brought into the shelter, the volunteers were unaware that she was carrying pups. It was only later, on September 21, that the truth came to light. A volunteer discovered a distressing scene in Tulip’s kennel—a stillborn puppy and an unresponsive mother.

“First litters typically are smaller,” explained Kathryn Custer, a dedicated shelter volunteer. The tragic loss weighed heavily on the shelter’s staff and Tulip, who seemed to mourn her lost pup.

An Act of Compassion

As the weeks passed, Tulip’s recovery became a priority. Due to her reactivity toward other dogs and the shelter’s overcapacity, she was kept separate and received tender care in an employee’s office. The shelter provided her with stuffed animals, which Tulip would cradle, simulating a nurturing motherly instinct.

But the real heroics began when Custer, while caring for a frail kitten in the same room, noticed something extraordinary. The kitten’s cries stirred Tulip’s emotions. She reacted with concern, whimpering and showing an unanticipated motherly side.

“Every time I closed the box she would rush to that side of her crate and bark at me,” Custer explained. “As soon as I opened the box she would calm down and try to lick the kitten. I think she sensed something was wrong with him; she was very gentle with the kitten.”

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The heartwarming incident was shared on TikTok, where viewers were moved by Tulip’s compassion. “She knew that kitty needed a mama,” one commenter noted. Tulip’s response to the distressed kitten revealed a depth of empathy that transcended species.

A Continuing Tale of Kindness

Tragically, the kitten in question didn’t survive. However, Tulip’s story doesn’t end there. The shelter introduced her to other kittens, and she has proven to be a kind and gentle presence. Her interactions with the kittens have brought happiness to Tulip, a testament to her nurturing spirit.

While the shelter remains cautious about putting kittens in her crate for their safety, they believe Tulip’s capacity to care for kittens demonstrates her potential as a pet in a family with cats. She’s not the only animal in the shelter displaying such empathetic behavior. A mother cat took in two orphaned kittens, and dogs react with distress when they hear others crying, requiring comfort from staff and volunteers.

Tulip’s extraordinary story is a reminder that compassion knows no boundaries, transcending species, and warming our hearts in the unlikeliest of places. In the shelter, amid stories of hardship, Tulip’s act of kindness stands as a testament to the incredible connections that can form between animals, even in the face of adversity.

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