It’s common sense that in nature the bigger animals tend to prey on the small ones. It’s never the case where a predator would come across a small prey-like animal and not have their instincts kick in.
But at the Berlin Zoo, something like this happened. There was a cat that decided to push into a bear’s territory. The cat casually walked into the enclosure while the crowd around could only watch in anticipation of what would happen next…
Mäuschen was an Asiatic bear who lived at the Berlin Zoo. In 2000, the crowd gathered around his enclosure to watch something remarkable. A cat had the guts to saunter around the bear’s enclosure like they owned the place.
Guests could only watch in horror as they saw the cat approach the bear. They feared the worst possible outcome – that the cat wouldn’t make it back out of the cage.
Both the staff at the zoo and the visitors loved one animal above all other. With all the species that resided in all the enclosures, Mäuschen was everyone’s favorite. Everyone respected the bear’s strength and also her beauty.
The cat that decided to go into the enclosure was later named Muschi. Muschi didn’t seem bothered by Mäuschen’s 800 pounds of muscle and approached the bear anyway.
The same day, staff were busy feeding Mäuschen when they noticed a black cat sitting in a tree not far from the enclosure. This was Muschi before she had decided to go into the bear’s domain.
The cat wasn’t part of any exhibit. Who would want to go see a common house cat at the zoo? Nobody knew where Muschi was from so they just let them go about their business. No one could have guessed that they would actually go inside Mäuschen’s territory.
Mäuschen then noticed the black cat in the tree. The bear quickly became curious and everyone wondered what their intentions were. Did they see the cat as a new friend or did they see them as a tasty morsel?
The bear curiously approached the tree and looked up at the cat. Something that nobody expected happened. The cat decided to investigate too and jumped from the tree into the enclosure.
Everyone was frozen in place. They could just watch as the cat approached the bear. But to their amazement, Mäuschen gave the cat a curious sniff and acted docile.
After a few short moments the two seemed like friends. People would say it isn’t natural for a cat and a bear to become friends but who cares? Soon Mäuschen and Muschi were inseparable.
In 2007, the zoo decided that they wanted Mäuschen’s life to be a little nicer by expanding her enclosure. This was a necessary decision to make Mäuschen a bit happier, but there was one problem with that decision.
While the enclosure was being expanded, the two best friends had to be separated until the construction was done. The two weren’t pleased in the least by this decision.
Even though this was best for both the animals and soon they would have a much nicer enclosure to play around in, they didn’t understand what was going on and hated it. Both animals probably assumed they would never see each other again.
Muschi would sit by the cage Mäuschen was in and would never leave their side. The staff at the zoo noticed this and it didn’t sit right with them. They felt that they were responsible for their separation and that that had to rectify it.
The two animals were very unhappy when they were separated but that changed when they were finally reunited after the enclosure’s renovations were done. They took a little time to get accustomed to their new home but soon they were settled in and happy.
The two had now become a huge attraction at the Berlin Zoo and crowds would amass just to see the two together. They’re truly a unique case when it comes to the animal kingdom.
People came from far and wide to see the two best friends in their enclosure. The crowd’s found it intriguing that two animals that couldn’t be further species wise, enjoyed each other’s company so much.
When enough people started watching the pair they started to ask an important and overlooked question. Where did Muschi come from and why had she picked Mäuschen’s enclosure?
As curious as people were as to where Muschi came from, they never got a definitive answer and were left to wonder. But one thing that’s a lot more than interesting than how Muschi arrived is why did the two get along?
Surely the cat’s intuition would have told her to stay away from a hulking predator like Mäuschen? Despite this, she still went into the cage with confidence that the bear wouldn’t attack. People started to believe that it was destiny.
Yes, Muschi and Mäuschen’s friendship is incredibly unique and very adorable, but it also has a deeper meaning. Nobody ever thought that a random cat and bear that didn’t grow up together would become the best of friends.
They are living proof that even though people are different whether it’s their race, culture, or personality, friendships can blossom out of anywhere! People don’t have to hang around with the same people because friendship can be found in the most unexpected places. They weren’t the only two at a zoo with an interesting relationship.
Amazingly enough, Muschi and Mäuschen weren’t the only bear and cat couple that has a special bond between them.
While many people thought that Muschi and Mäuschen’s relationship was unique to the Berlin Zoo, another one was discovered all the way in California! They were found at the Folsom City Zoo Sanctuary. Perhaps our next bear and cat relationship would help researchers better understand why this type of pairing was happening multiple times. Keep reading to check out the similarities between Muschi and Mäuschen’s and the next bear and cat relationship.
Much like Muschi, a black cat, whom the workers named Little Bear wandered into the Folsom City Zoo Sanctuary and eventually found itself inside the zoo’s bear enclosure. Much like in Berlin, people were scared that something horrible was going to happen to the cat being all alone in a cage with a bear.
However, to everyone’s relief, the two got along swimmingly and it actually appeared that the two sincerely enjoyed being around each other.
Little Bear was initially quite the sneaky cat. Zookeepers discovered the cat sneaking into the bear’s enclosure every morning to steal some of the food that they would leave out for the animal.
Instead of acting like the dangerous predator it could have become, the bear allowed the cat to eat some of its food every day. Eventually, zookeepers began putting out a bowl of cat food for the cat and their bear friend left the food for their new feline friend to eat.
Many of the Zoo’s employees and zookeepers were shocked by the unusual relationship between the two animals. For the most part, it just didn’t make sense for the two of them to have such a mutual relationship.
Jill Faust, a senior lead zookeeper in Folsom City, claimed that it was unlike anything that she had seen in her whole career. While the two animals were an odd pair, the zoo wanted to do its best to foster the relationship the best they could.
While Little Bear wandered around the zoo as they pleased, the cat made an interesting choice for a best friend. Little Bear took interest in one of the zoo’s largest animals. Choosing to befriend a 500-pound black bear named Sequoia.
While Sequoia had never really been aggressive in nature, the zookeepers still wanted to keep an eye on the unusual pair in order to make sure that Little Bear wasn’t in any serious danger.
Most zoos and other wildlife sanctuaries, unfortunately, suffer financially and need all the help they can get to maintain the grounds and provide for the animals. Luckily for the Folsom City Zoo Sanctuary, Sequoia and Little Bear’s relationship helped to greatly increase foot traffic at the zoo.
People were coming from all over to witness for themselves a small house cat and a 550-pound bear hanging out with each other. For many, the sight was unbelievable.
Even though Little Bear was a fraction of the size and weight of Sequoia and the other bears in the enclosure, she never seemed intimidated by any of them. If anything, the cat appeared to be very comfortable around their newly adopted bear family.
For most of the day, Little Bear could be seen relaxing in the shade provided by the trees in the enclosure as Sequoia and the other bears went about their business. Some people even believe that Little Bear might have thought they were a bear too!
During her time relaxing at the zoo, and especially the bear enclosure, Little Bear was loving all of the attention they were getting from the visitors. Despite hanging around other animals that could kill her at any second she appeared completely relaxed.
Much like Muschi and Mäuschen, Little Bear and Sequoia had become inseparable and left visitors scratching their heads. And much like our first bear and cat pairing, the connection between the two appeared to be immediate.
Both Muschi and Mäuschen and Little Bear and Sequoia are both undoubtedly strange relationships between two cats and two bears. Although each relationship is unique in their own ways, both friendships have proven that we may not know as much about animal behavior as we think.
Both sets of friends have now come so far that there’s little doubt that their relationships will only grow stronger in time. We thought friendships like this only existed in Disney movies! If this story touched your heart, keep reading to see the unusual friendships one orphaned baby monkey formed.
Life was looking grim for an infant vervet monkey who was found on the side of the road in Zimbabwe. He was clinging to his dead mother when he was found by some good samaritans who took him to an animal sanctuary. This sanctuary didn’t have any monkeys of his kind, but it wasn’t the humans who helped this little guy become who he is today!
This monkey’s name is Horace. He lives at the Twala Trust Animal Sanctuary in Zimbabwe, Africa. “His mom had been hit by a car on a very busy highway. He was found sitting on her body, on the side of the road. He’s lucky that he got picked up by the right person, who then brought him here,” Twala founder Sarah Carter told The Dodo in 2016.
Horace was just a helpless infant when he was first taken to the Twala Trust Animal Sanctuary. The tiny primate might have been frightened at first in his new environment, but luckily he was in good hands.
Twala provides a safe haven for wildlife creatures in need. As a result, the rescue is home to a variety of different species including cats, dogs, lions, and antelope. You would think that the situation wouldn’t fare well, but you’d be surprised…
For a young vervet like Horace, it might have been intimidating to see all these different animals in the same space. Thankfully, all the animals at the rescue were very welcoming to the newbie.
“Since we had so many orphans at the time, and not enough hands, we had to raise everyone together… They just formed this relationship, which is great,” says Carter. It was just up to Horace to warm up to his new roommates. The kittens weren’t the only ones who wanted to be friends with Horace either.
As Horace grew up at Twala, he began warming up to his new friends. The rescue has a variety of wild and domestic animals, but Horace was first drawn to the equally adorable kittens.
Perhaps they were less intimidating because they were similar in size and, after all, who could be afraid of a kitten?! But soon enough, Horace grew close to the older members of the rescue, who learned to accept the monkey as one of their own as you’ll see next.
Soon enough, Horace was comfortable enough to snuggle up to his new feline friends. Being that they were around as he was growing up, Horace most likely felt a special bond towards them.
Aside from his human caretakers, these felines probably felt obligated to care for this orphaned monkey. A lot of people see cats as finicky animals, but here you can clearly see how open and loving they can be – especially towards other animals!
Pretty soon, Horace was making friends with more of the animals at Twala. One of his closest pals would be Keiko, one of several rescue dogs who also lived at the sanctuary.
Twala is home to a variety of wild and domestic animals who’ve been abandoned or abused. Sarah Carter and her team continually work hard to provide a safe and nurturing environment for these animals who otherwise might not have made it on their own in the wild. You’ll laugh when you see what antics Horace is always up to!
As he grew up, Horace earned a reputation for napping a lot. Horace has a tendency to fall asleep anywhere, especially when he’s cuddling with one of his feline friends. It must be the comfort of having someone around to make you feel protected.
“Horace is a master napper. He fights it though as he is afraid he will miss something… And he loves to nap and sleeps anywhere he pleases,” Carter told Daily Mail in 2015.
Horace has even made friends with the resident antelope at Twala. He may seem like a bit of a nuisance, but the animals know that it’s just Horace’s playful and curious nature. There is never any true roughhousing between these animals.
“Horace is hugely confident and affectionate having been raised in a very diverse and loving environment at Twala,” says Carter. “He has many friends, human and animal, and is seldom alone. He is mischievous, extremely clever and endlessly entertaining.”
“His biggest vice is being irresistibly drawn to the forbidden food he is not allowed to eat, places he shouldn’t be, objects he is not supposed to touch,” Carter told Daily Mail.
Horace may be a bit of a food-stealer, but lucky for him it was actually snack time when this photo was taken. The animals often share meals together and often eat a healthy buffet of natural fruits and veggies. Horace also spends so much time with other species that he starts to act like them too!