Awww! 12 Incredible Interspecies Moms in the Animal Kingdom

Cat and squirrels


(Image credit: Mary Cummins/YouTube)

This pet cat rescued two baby squirrels after finding them stranded in the backyard, owner Mary Cummins wrote on YouTube. Video of the unlikely surrogate parent shows the cat gently cleaning the squirrels and cuddling with them.

Dolphin and sperm whales


(Image credit: Alexander Wilson and Aquatic Mammals/YouTube)

Researchers discovered a group of sperm whales that seems to have taken in an adult bottlenose dolphin with a spinal malformation. The dolphin has an "S"-shape spinal curvature that may have put the animal at a disadvantage among its own kind. This is the first known instance of sperm whales cozying up to another species, according to the researchers, but the dolphin appeared right at home. Observations of the odd ocean family found that the dolphin would nuzzle the whale calves, rub against the whales in a friendly gesture, and otherwise socialize with the group.

Cat and chicks


(Image credit: Ali Jarekji/Alamy)

These chicks weren't orphaned for long. After their mother died, the chicks were cared for by Nimra, a 1-year-old cat. The cat looked after the seven chicks along with her kittens.

Kacey Deamer
Staff Writer
Kacey Deamer is a journalist for Live Science, covering planet earth and innovation. She has previously reported for Mother Jones, the Reporter's Committee for Freedom of the Press, Neon Tommy and more. After completing her undergraduate degree in journalism and environmental studies at Ithaca College, Kacey pursued her master's in Specialized Journalism: Climate Change at USC Annenberg. Follow Kacey on Twitter.