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Furry Tails: How orphaned Temba met his friend Albert

In 2008 near Cape Town South Africa, a wild baby elephant is orphaned. The staff at a nearby sanctuary Shamwari started to worry as elephant calves need milk for at least 2 years. They hoped that the other elephants would adopt him because they usually do. Unfortunately, the land was suffering from a drought and no one would adopt him.

So the staff at the reserve nearby prepared to rescue him. They had to dart the baby which is very dangerous as the rest of the heard becomes very protective. They were worried he wouldn’t make it through the rescue because he was so dehydrated.

They manage to rescue him and bring him back to Shamwari. But he refused to drink. Elephants are so emotional that they can mentally and physically shut down after suffering trauma.  Finally, he drinks water but no formula. The staff decided to get him an animal friend. That’s when Albert, a Marino sheep, from a neighbouring farm arrives.

They don’t exactly hit it off…

The elephant would charge at Albert and send him hiding. The sanctuary had a place for Albert to run into, so he would go and hide. Then he’d catch his breathe and come out of his safe area. But then the chase was on again! But Albert was just as curious…

Just under 24hrs things changed… 3 days later he started drinking milk. 2 weeks later he was out having his first walk with Albert the sheep. They were laying down together and cuddling in their enclosure, they would play together and they became inseparable.

They named the elephant Temba meaning hope.

If you don’t know Mel from The Drive Show, here’s one quick fact: she LOVES animals. She loves animals so much so wants to share it with the family. So once a week she shares one of her favourite animal stories in Furry Tails.

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