Leopards and dogs are best friends at the San Diego Zoo—a lifelong friendship

  • In the animal kingdom, weaker animals will run away at the sight of vicious predators such as cheetahs. However, it is the opposite in San Diego Zoo Safari Park where a cheetah and a dog became the best of friends.Ruuxa, the cheetah is a very close friend of Raina, the female Rhodesian ridgeback dog and the unlikely duo has been friends since they were both a cub and a puppy.

    Their friendship started to flourish when Ruuxa was recovering from a surgery in the safari.

    The cub was suffering from chondrodysplasia, a genetic condition where it caused dwarfism in his front leg. The surgery was performed to correct his deformity

    Ruuxa, who was abandoned by his mother since he was a cub had no one else to turn to. It was not until Raina came to sit beside him after he went through the surgery that he had someone to call a friend.

    Raina appeared right after Ruuxa went through the surgery and was still under the effects of anesthesia. Concerned with Ruuxa, Raina gently licked and nuzzled him

    The loving dog even stayed by Ruuxa’s side after he woke up from the surgery to make sure that he was okay

    Fast forward four years later, Ruuxa and Raina are still best friends and they are totally inseparable from each other

    Ruuxa who was supposed to be unable to run because of his deformity is now able to sprint just like any other cheetahs, thanks to the training and support that he gets from his best friend Raina.

    The two also like to chase down plush toys dragged by a rope and do anything together except when they eat


    Unlike what most people think, cheetahs are generally peaceful and they can get along easily with their canine counterparts just like Raina and Ruuxa.



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