The Rocky Ridge Refuge is a Sanctuary based in Arkansas, USA, and is home to a very special capybara. Founded by Janice Wolf, the sanctuary takes in abused and neglected animals, and they took in Cheesecake when she was just 6 years old.
As she was so young, Cheesecake initially lived inside the founder’s home, along with the dogs.
“She played with the dogs and slept with the dogs,” Wolf told The Dodo.
And so began the first of many friendships Cheescake would make at the farm.
When new orphaned puppies arrived at the sanctuary, Cheesecake would start caring for them as a foster mum.
“She would adopt them and she’d sleep with them and eat with them, and she’d discipline them too if they were naughty,” Wolf told The Dodo. “She was a good foster mom, and she just did a great job.”
It didn’t stop there though. Capybaras are very social animals and live in large groups in the wild, and so her family grew and grew.
To the emus…
And a deer…
Even a miniature horse…
Cheescake wasn’t the only capybara on the farm for long. In 2014, Wolf rescued a second capybara from someone who purchased him from an exotic pet trader.
“A kid had ordered him online and had him flown to New York City,” Wolf explained to The Dodo. “They somehow found me, and I got sent this tiny little capybara.”
The capybara (Hydrochoerus hydrochaeris) is native to semi-tropical areas of South America, from Venezuela on down to Argentina, and it is illegal to own one as a pet in New York. Since arriving Cobbler has gotten on very well with Cheesecake, and they continue to live happily together.
Most recently Cheesecake has struck up a bond with a chicken, who tends to prefer riding on her back when it snows, rather than get her claws wet.
“She rides around on both of the capybaras, but her favourite has always been Cheesecake,” Wolf said.