[monkeywire] Cat comforts grieving orangutan at zoo
josh.greenman at gmail.com
Fri Mar 10 13:24:53 EST 2006
Cat comforts grieving orangutan at zoo
March 10, 2006 (PANAMA CITY BEACH, Fla.) - Tondalayo, a 45-year-old
Sumatran orangutan, and T.J., a stray tabby cat, became an inseparable
duo after a zoo employee introduced them late last year.
Stephanie Willard, Education Director at Zoo World in Panama City
Beach, said Tondalayo was depressed since losing her mate two years
Her age prevented her from moving to another zoo or taking another
mate. The ducks and turtles swimming in a moat around her island were
not enough, Willard told the Panama City News Herald for Thursday's
When the sweet-natured orange cat wandered into Willard's life, the
solution became clear.
"It's an unbelievable match," Willard said. "This has worked out a lot
better than I expected it to. She's got brighter eyes now. He's
brought a lot of light to her."
Zookeepers named the cat, T.K. short for "Tondalayo's Kitty."
They play together, cuddle and sleep together each night. They have
been together constantly for more than a month.
"He's perked up Tonda more than anything," Willard said.
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