International Mother’s Day has got me thinking about so many fond memories of when my own children were growing up – the play fights, the ball games, the petty squabbles that ended with smiles all round and the landmark moments.
Well it seems things are not so very different in the animal kingdom and – just for fun – I have compiled a selection of seriously cute videos guaranteed to raise a chuckle…
The appeal of this internet sensation is the way the parent panda is so contentedly chewing on bamboo – seemingly without a care in the world – while the oh-so-cute infant sleeps at its feet. Then, when it is suddenly startled by a simple sneeze from its new arrival, it reacts with such shock that it’s impossible not to laugh. And I challenge you not to giggle every time you watch it – time after time after time.
Extraordinary animal mothers
This news item from CBS in America turns the camera on some amazing mothers from the animal kingdom. Watch how Lily the black Labrador, whose own puppies had just been adopted by new mothers, cares with such devotion for a litter of abandoned kittens. And she’s not the only super-mum featured. There’s also the cat that allows a deer fawn to suckle, the foal raised by a goat and – almost unbelievably – the leopard which nurtures an orphan baby baboon.
Bobcat kittens adopted by housecat
In this video Bobby, the appropriately named housecat, is called upon to care for three wild bobcat kittens. What is most touching for me is the way she is so gentle with her adopted family as the little balls of fluff are introduced to her one by one with their eyes still closed. So heart-warming.
Polar bear mum and cub
I love to spend time in the local park with my grandchildren, who just adore ball games. Well, it seems polar bears are no different. In this touching video, a mother polar bear plays with her young cub, Augo, in and around the zoo pool. She does tricks with a bucket and ball and Augo, who is deliciously cute, learns from her and joins in the fun.
Coco and Norris
The stars of this film are Coco the pygmy goat and Norris, her kid. Despite being just two weeks old, Norris is full of beans and bounces around and explores his surroundings with bags of energy. And, like all mothers and grandmothers, Coco in turn has to be patient and encouraging, while also keeping a close eye on things to ensure all the fun and games are safe.
First steps of a baby giraffe
Every mother remembers her child’s first steps, but at least with us there is time to build up slowly to what can be a momentous time. With many animals, things happen far more quickly. In this video, Johanka the baby giraffe attempts to stand for the first time – and at just half an hour old. The film is both touching and funny; it’s lovely to see how mum Julia tries to help her offspring as she tries to organise her gangly legs, but it’s also hard not to laugh when it all goes wrong.
Lioness and her cub
This video from the zoo in the Bronx, New York, reminds me of many hours spent watching the grandchildren on school sports days. Here, the male lion watches on as a lioness teaches her juvenile cub hunting techniques through play. But, as so often happens, things get a little rough.
The cat and the parrot
Almost two-and-a-half million people have watched this movie and it’s easy to see why – the hero feline is so gentle as it tolerates the attentions of a white parrot determined to interrupt its cat nap. Reminds me of so many occasions when Sunday morning lie-ins would be ended by one of the children jumping on the bed keen to play.
Baby elephant wants to play
On a similar theme, this movie shows a baby elephant and its mother. The youngster is keen to play, while the mum would much prefer to lie down and relax for a little. The moment at 0:37 seconds, when the exasperated youngster takes matters into his own hands, is hilarious.
The Baby Animals Song
Although it’s a little different, I’ve chosen this video for those grannies with grandchildren who are just learning to read and write. It’s a charming animated song, which explains with fun graphics the various names for baby animals. The song, written and performed by A. J. Jenkins, is pitched perfectly for its age group.