This is another one of those animal partnerships that tell us that animals don’t get enough credit for their capability to have deep emotional attachments. Some visitors may have bumped into this story already when surfing the internet but it is the first time I have seen it.
This particular partnership also appears to support the view that ginger tabby cats are very stable, sensible and intelligent cats. Another ginger tabby cat befriended a deer.
The orangutan, Tonda, had lived at Zoo World, Panama City, Florida for 11 years. She had a male mate at the zoo who died. Tonda became melancholy and lost her appetite. The zoo keepers came up with an enlightened solution.
They slowly introduced a ginger cat to Tonda. The cat became known as T.K. (Tonda’s Kitty). As Tonda got to know T.K. she disliked it when the contact session was terminated and showed the keepers that she was keen and ready to be with TK on a permanent basis.
And so it happened. That must have been a brave step to take for the organisers. No problem: the two formed an incredibly close relationship. Tonda would play with T.K. and carry him to bed at night etc. It appears she did all the usual things that an excellent human cat caretaker would do. In fact, I have a hunch that she did more, far more than the average human cat caretaker does.
In return, T.K. was extremely attentive towards Tonda like a true gentleman. Once again I sense that he behaved better than many a husband!
The particularly interesting facet of this relationship is that Tonda is a large, powerful and dangerous orangutan who appears not to have been enormously friendly towards her deceased male orangutan mate. She may have been a bit difficult to handle in general but became as mellow as can be with a ginger tom moggie cat.
It makes you wonder if animal to animal relationships have the capability to be finer and more refined than a lot of human to human relationships. We should not dismiss that as an impossibility.