Animal odd couples are a documented phenomenon. Check out these two love birds!
We can't seem to get enough of these unusual interspecies friendships, and with good reason. They're ADORABLE.
This video documents one such friendship between a wild raccoon and a feral cat. According to the person who posted the video, these two show up together, eat their fill of the food that has been left out for them, and leave together each night.
In the video, you can see the cat getting pretty cozy with the raccoon, who seems more interested in the chow than the cuddles, but even so, it's quite clear the two are bonded.
Scientists have studied cross-species relationships like this one. Although such bonds are seemingly more common among captive animals, that's obviously not always the case, as we see in this example. Animal friendships are most likely to form between young animals, and among animals in stressful situations who learn to lean on each other for comfort and even protection.
There is some debate in scientific circles regarding how and why animal friendships occur. Some believe interspecies friendships are exactly that - friendships - but others are more skeptical because the overwhelming majority of these bonds are observed in human-controlled environments.
Part of the issue in interpreting the nature of these cross-species relationships is that the database of documented instances is still very small, and there's simply not enough information yet to suggest any patterns.
Follow along at our Wide Open Pets Facebook!
This article was originally published March 11, 2018.