Baby rhino cuddles carer in heartmelting video

Orphaned Rhino Calf Cuddles With Veterinary Nurse


A video of a baby rhino cuddling up to its carer at a sanctuary in South Africa has got the internet's collective heart melting.

The little baby, called Kabelo, used a worker at The Rhino Orphanage sanctuary in Limpopo Province as his "pillow".


See also: Baby rhino rescued after being abandoned by its mother

See also: Ranger comforts orphaned baby rhino with bedtime stories



Veterinary nurse Laura Ellison shared the aww-inducing video on her Instagram page, and also explained a bit about the pair's special bond.

Really, I'm just his pillow. While I want you all to experience the gentleness of rhinos, to fall in love with them as I have and inspire the same desperation I have to save them, I must stress the relationship I have with our rhinos that allow these experiences. I have been with Kabelo since his arrival to the orphanage and we have developed such a strong bond. While Kabelo is so comfortable with me, he is not with many others. Please appreciate that he is still a wild animal.. But also with the capacity to love so forgivingly. Humans took his mother and for him to trust me the way he does is incredibly bittersweet. Rhinos deserve a life with their mothers without human interference. Please help me fight to secure it. #saveourrhinos To use this video in a commercial player or in broadcasts, please email licensing@storyful.com

A video posted by Laura Ellison (@lauraellison) on


She wrote: "Really I'm just his pillow.

"While I want you all to experience the gentleness of rhinos, to fall in love with them as I have and inspire the same desperation I have to save them, I must stress the relationship I have with our rhinos that allow these experiences.

"I have been with Kabelo since his arrival to the orphanage and we have developed such a strong bond. While Kabelo is so comfortable with me, he is not with many others. Please appreciate that he is still a wild animal... But also with the capacity to love so forgivingly.

"Humans took his mother and for him to trust me the way he does is incredibly bittersweet. Rhinos deserve a life with their mothers without human interference. Please help me fight to secure it. #saveourrhinos."

The Rhino Orphanage was founded by Arrie van Deventer in 2012. According to its website, the orphanage is the first specialist, dedicated, non-commercial centre that cares for orphaned and injured baby rhinos with the only aim of releasing them back into the wild.

It was created as the result of a lack of a specialised place for rearing baby rhinos who have been orphaned as a consequence of the current poaching crisis which feeds the illegal trade in horns.

You can help the baby rhinos by adopting one or making a one-time donation here.

10 PHOTOS
Pictures of baby rhinos
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Baby rhino cuddles carer in heartmelting video
Ailsa, a six week old baby White Rhino, at Drummond Safari park near Stirling, Scotland. Mother "Dot" one of Blair Drummond Safari Parks White Rhinos gave birth to her second calf as part of the European Breeding Programme. Staff were alerted to the birth by an individual who had phoned in from Cyprus after following Dot's pregnancy on the Rhino Web Cam on the safari web site.
This orphan is being fed by a carer at Imire Game Farm, Zimbabwe, after its mother was killed by poachers.
Komala, the 8 week old baby Greater One Horned Rhino, the first to be born at Chester Zoo in 80 years, takes her first steps outside.
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