A nursing mum has given her breast milk to this adorable baby hare after her husband rescued it from a building site where it had been accidentally dug up.
The man, who was not named, was working as a lorry driver at a construction site in the city of Linz in Austria when the baby hare was dug up.
It was clearly in a state of shock and with no chance of survival as its home had been destroyed, so the kindhearted man decided to rescue it and alert a local animal shelter.
Luise Schintlmeister, social media manager for the Tierparadies Schabenreith animal shelter in Austria, said: “The truck driver’s wife called the animal shelter Schabenreith, but since it was already too late in the evening, and we currently provide care to too many wild animals, we had no way of picking the animal up immediately.”
The couple, with a newborn baby of their own, realised that the baby hare, that reportedly weighs about 70 grammes (0.15 lbs), was unlikely to survive the night without something to eat so they decided to give it some of the mother’s breast milk.
Additionally, the baby hare was also given fennel tea due to a lack of other food alternatives.
The shelter said that the baby was a brown hare (Lepus europaeus) and it stayed with the family for the night before being collected by the shelter in the morning.
According to online sources, dairy milk is not recommended for leporids as they can sometimes appear to be lactose-intolerant.
However, according to the animal shelter there is no empirical evidence which could prove whether human breast milk is necessarily bad for brown hares.
When asked if human breast milk could cause any damage, Schintlmeister added: “We were surprised that human breast milk can be given to young hare babies. We hadn’t heard of such a case before.”
The animal shelter could not reveal the information about the family who rescued the bunny due to data protection laws, but reported that the small animal was brought uninjured to their facility by the woman and her child the next day on 8th June 2021.
According to the Tierparadies Schabenreith animal shelter, located in the Steinbach am Ziehberg municipality in the district of Kirchdorf an der Krems in the Austrian state of Upper Austria, the bunny is doing well.
As it was very thirsty and drank a lot of fluids when it was first found, rescuers decided to name it ‘Bacchus’.
In Roman mythology, Bacchus was the god of agriculture, wine and fertility, equivalent to the Greek god Dionysus.
The animal shelter, which currently takes care of over 500 animals and was established by Doris and Harald Hofner in 1993, reported that the hare will be released back into the wild when it is older.
The shelter is located on a 13th-century farm in the Upper Austrian foothills of the Alps at an altitude of around 800 metres.
To find out more about the author, editor or agency that supplied this story – please click below.
Story By: Georgina Jadikovska, Sub-Editor: Joseph Golder, Agency: Newsflash
The Ananova page is created by and dedicated to professional, independent freelance journalists. It is a place for us to showcase our work. When our news is sold to our media partners, we will include the link here.