Adopted Wild Boar thinks She was a DOG, Sees the Labrador as her Mother

An animal mad couple who reared a wild boar baby the size of a loaf of bread alongside their four rescue dogs when she was abandoned in a box on their doorstep say she sees their golden Labrador as her mum despite now weighing 130lb.

Jewellers Dora Wei, 28, and Nuwan Hemachandraand, 32, returned from a three day camping trip in early September 2020 to find a surprise delivery from their gardener – a  tiny, shivering baby boar had been left outside their house in Kandy, in the Sri Lankan jungle.

Believing the piglet they named Yezhu to have been separated from her mother and to be only a few hours old, they Googled “how to raise a wild boar” and set up a gruelling routine of warm baths and hourly meals to keep her alive.

But Dora says it was three-year-old Labrador rescue Biu Biu, who acted as “mummy,” training her to eat, walk, and play, adding: “Thanks to her wonderful parenting, Yezhu thinks she is a dog.

“And despite being around twice her weight now, she still thinks Biu Biu’s her mum.”

Dora, who is originally from Guangzhou, China, and Nuwan, who have been together for four years, thought Yezhu – who now sports an impressive mohawk – was a baby deer when they first found her.

“It was the first time I’d ever seen a wild boar. I actually thought she  was a deer, but then I double checked the nose and I realised what she was,” said Dora.

“I was so shocked. I didn’t know what to do. We didn’t know if we should keep her or not. But she was helpless and crying.

“It was a life or death situation. If we didn’t keep her she would probably die.”

She added: “Taking care of her came from the heart. She’s a living creature, we couldn’t let her die.

“Any animals that come into our home are welcome.

“Our hearts just melted when we saw Yezhu. She was so tiny, we wanted her to be that small forever.”

When they found Yezhu, Dora called her friend who worked with wildlife conservationists, but was told that no zoos or rescue centres would provide a home for the tiny piglet.

So, refusing to abandon her, the couple welcomed the adorable sow into their home to live with their two Basset hounds, Benjamin, eight, and Ginger, five, their cocker spaniel, Coco, three, and Biu Biu.

Dora said: “Thankfully, because of the pandemic, we had a lot of free time and we knew we couldn’t just leave her as she would die.”

She added: “We checked online and soon found it’s not easy to take care of a newborn as they may not have had their mum’s milk.

“She woke up every two hours crying for food.

“We needed to keep her warm, so we replaced a warm water bottle every hour  and keep it beside her.”

The first weeks were critical for Yezhu’s survival, so Dora took turns with Nuwan to replace her food and warm water bottle every hour until she was in better shape – even sleeping on the sofa so they could monitor her.

She said: “We took turns sleeping with her in the living room, because we had to feed her every two hours.

“During the day, I’d end up on the couch with her. It was really tough for the first few weeks, as we were not sleeping much.”

She added: “We thought she wasn’t going to survive. She was very unwell.”

Thankfully, after feeding her with milk replacer – a formula  substituted for the mother’s milk – and carving out a little sleeping area in their living room, Yezhu was soon feeling better and grew from  around 1lb to 1.5lb in just a week.

Ignoring her fragility, she immediately took to Biu Biu and would constantly try to squeeze into her mouth and climb on top of her – something she still attempts to do despite her increased size.

Dora said: “With Yezhu, we had a fourth dog. She was doing everything like the dogs. She walked with them, played with them.

“She’s always running around with them and she always wants to be with them.

“Within 30 minutes of letting Yezhu out of the box, she was trying to climb in Biu Biu’s mouth. It was so funny.”

She added: “Now they are completely inseparable. They do everything together.”

Yezhu and Biu Biu join each other for daily walks and swims and even eat out of the same bowl, but most of all, they love to take naps together.

Dora said: “We didn’t even need to train Yezhu, she just followed the dogs, so in a way they trained her.”

She added: “When they ate, she followed. When they went on walks, or went for poos, she just followed.

“Wild boars are very clean animals,  so she has always been incredibly well behaved.”

In March 2021, Dora and Nuwan decided to build a tiny replica of their home for Yezhu in their garden and even created a little pool for her to cool off in.

But she still prefers to run amok in the house, where she waits patiently for pats and belly rubs.

Nuwan, who has now returned to work, as the island has lifted Covid restrictions, says Yezhu’s unexpected arrival on their doorstep was the best present anyone could have asked for and has changed their lives.

He said: “It’s been pretty incredible. We absolutely love animals and Yezhu to us was just another part of our family.”

He added: “The fact the animals all love each other so much and spend so much time together feels really unique.

“Yezhu has been sleeping on Biu Biu since the very beginning.

“Even now, she doesn’t realise how big she has become, so she still sits on Biu Biu.”

He added: “It’s just a way of showing love.

“We’re so grateful that she was left in a crate with us.”

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