Video: Cheetah Cub In Little Casts Gets A Visit From Puppy BFF After Surgery
Back in June, the San Diego Zoo paired Ruxxa, a 6-week-old cheetah, with Raina, a Rhodesian Ridgeback puppy. Recently, Ruxxa had to have surgery on his front legs, and Raina was there to check up on her cheetah buddy.
In a post on the San Diego Zoo's YouTube channel, it's explained that Ruxxa had a growth abnormality in his forelegs. The ulna bones had stopped growing before the radius bones, which caused his limbs to bow. To correct it, Sean Aiken of the Veterinary Specialty Hospital performed surgery on Ruxxa at the Safari Park's Harter Veterinary Medical Center. Aiken was assisted by Christine Molter, D.V.M., and senior veterinarian Jeff Zuba.
Zuba said that this type of abnormality is sometimes seen in dogs. If it's left untreated, it can interfere with walking and cause the animal pain. In Ruxxa's case, they were able to correct the deformity.
Raina waited for Ruxxa to wake up from sedation, then cuddled up with him after he awoke. The San Diego Zoo often pairs cheetah cubs with puppies, as a domesticated dog's body language and comfort with humans helps the cheetah remain calm. Ruxxa and Raina were paired together after Ruxxa, the sole cub of his litter, was abandoned by his mother. Ruxxa has little casts on his legs for now, but the zoo predicts he'll be playing with Raina again soon.