The staff at Leo Zoological Center in Greenwich, Connecticut, have been caring for a cheetah name Adaeze since she was seven weeks old, but it’s an Australian Shepherd named Odie who has really bonded with the cheetah, and taken her under his paw.
When Adaeze was born, her mother, overwhelmed with the size of her litter, cut off her milk and was unable to care for her. That’s when Marcella Leone, who founded the center in 2009, stepped in and introduced the future besties.
Leone told ABC news:
“I wanted Adaeze to bond with a dog because she would need the outlet for play and past studies have shown calm dogs can help tame cheetahs — especially in stressful public events where a dog is at ease.”
Leone intended to pair Adaeze with a calm puppy her own age, but the cheetah only had eyes for the older and “naughty” Odie.
“Of course she could care less about the young puppy, but just immediately hit it off with Odie. They roughhouse and play nonstop. They’re just best friends who love each other.”
“Now they are inseparable and sleep together at night. They are only apart from each other during feeding, and it’s only because Odie will gulp down his food like a little pig.”
After eating they are “nose-to-nose” against their doors anxious to be together again.
There’s never been any displays of aggression between the best buds. In fact, Adaeze might be a good role model for the rambunctious Odie! “Odie won’t sit when we ask, but Adaeze will.” However, Leone says the pawsitive influence in goes both ways, “Odie is full of energy, but is somehow this calming force for Adaeze.”
This wagnificent duo is crazy cute, and giving me some major #relationshipgoals – watch the video for some good ole fashioned wrastlin’ and to see these pawesome best buds in action!
Featured image via @leoconservation