Animals may not be able to communicate on the same level as humans, but from what we have seen, they tend to understand a lot more about their situations than we give them credit for. Frightened, homeless dogs or dogs who have been through the hellish torture of the dog fighting industry have quickly grown to trust humans and show their appreciation. There have been wild horses that have likely never interacted face-to-face with humans who paused a moment to thank the man who saved them. Sometimes, we find an amazing amount understanding from creatures we would never expect, like in the case of this story.

The happy-looking one in the photo below, named Rax, is a tree hyrax, a species native to East Africa. Rax was found orphaned as a baby and was taken under the wing of The David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust (DSWT). There are no details as to how Rax ended up all alone as a baby, but we can take a guess. According to the African Wildlife Fund, habitat loss due to growing human population and agriculture is the biggest problem facing creatures like Rax today. Luckily, Rax was found by humans and she ended up in the very capable hands of the staff at DSWT who hand-raised her until she was old enough to be released back into the wild.

Rax may have settled into her new life, but she hasn’t strayed very far from the humans who saved her. She likes stopping by for visits, even if it’s just for a quick cuddle.


Rax is absolutely adorable, but make no mistake, she is nothing like an adoptable bunny or rat (in fact, the closest genetic relative to the hyrax are elephants and manatees), she’s a wild animal. That’s why we’re so glad that the humans at DSTW released her back into the wild where she belongs. She’s now a mother of five, but it warms our hearts to know that she likes to stop by every now and again to show her appreciation.

To learn more about The David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust, visit their official website.

Image source: The David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust