When five newborn cheetahs lost their mother earlier this month, they wound up in the care of a foster parent who is not only another gender, but another species entirely.
Blakely the dog, a trained nursery companion who helps baby animals learn to socialize, is the cheetahs’ new surrogate parent. The Cincinnati Zoo brought Blakely in to take care of them after their mother, a 5-year-old cheetah named Willow, passed away following complications of the birth.
The new family may look strange—albeit cute—to outsiders, but the five babies appear to have fully accepted their new foster parent, who has been helping them develop by snuggling and playing with them.
It’s a lot of responsibility for one dog. Blakely’s adopted children have weak immune systems, and require 24-hour care. Plus, cheetahs are an endangered species, with only about 12,000 remaining on earth. But Blakely saved five of them.