Goats and kittens, a special-needs puppy whose best friend is a piglet, a horse and a cat who are inseperable—these and other animal stories helped us learn to be better humans.

The entire staff of Daily Paws gets all bouncy over animal friendship stories, because just when you think you've seen it all, a cat frolics with a baby deer, or a magpie and English Stafforshire bull terrier become feathered and furred forever friends. Witnessing such pure connections makes the world full of more sunshiny goodness, and there's absolutely nothing wrong with that!

Some of our favorite unlikely friendships of 2021 are funny, a few are truly precious, and others make you smile. A lot. We hope you enjoy all the feels of these special bonds. 

Lucy the Golden Retriever Meets New Kitten Sister Joey

dog meets kitten tiktok
Credit: Courtesy of katiesquibb / TikTok

Introducing a new cat to family members takes patience, so it's only natural that Lucy wanted to investigate this funny-smelling, itty-bitty creature. But, as sociable golden retrievers are prone to do, the urge to have a new playmate was too tempting to resist, and the result is a heartwarming encounter adored by more than 13 million TikTok viewers. 

Opie the Goldendoodle's Immediate Love for New Wee Human

goldendoodle meets and snuggles with baby
Credit: Courtesy of justineklopephoto / TikTok

Love at first sight? Absolutely! Goldendoodles are highly affectionate, but Obie is one step away from setting up a college fund after just a few sniffs of his new baby brother. There's a lot of snoot-nuzzling and tail-wagging going on, but it's the angelic way Obie watches over him in the crib that proves it's a match made in heaven.

Great Pyrenees Luna Tells Cat Brother Dill "Enough!"—By Sitting on Him

dog sits on cat TikTok
Credit: Courtesy of lindsaycurtis1 / TikTok

Siblings. Always pushing one poke too far. In the battle over the cozy dog bed, after many suspected infractions by little brother cat Dill, Luna the Great Pyrenees simply exercises her #girlpower might—and sits on Dill. Got mah bed, now whatcha' gonna do? You just have to see it. 

Kitten Hippity Hops Just Like New Bunny Buddy

hopping kitten and her bunny friend
Credit: Courtesy of p_malina / TikTok

We mistakenly think cats don't need anyone, but as this video proves, a little kitten is not only ready to accept his new rabbit friend, but also wants to jump like him! (Ahem: We don't think catnip was involved.) Apparently there's actually a scientific explanation called social learning theory that sheds light on the behavior. More likely, it's simply a cat doing whatever he pleases.  

Goat Hector Eager to Have Kittens as Playmates

baby goat in a barn
Credit: Natasha Sioss / Getty

The tenacity of goats to chew on cans or climb the highest point in the barnyard is well known. But one of the reasons why watching adorable Hector try to make new pussycat pals pulls at our heartstrings is maybe because it's 1st grade recess all over again: "Will you be my friend? How 'bout you?" Hector, you are all of us.  

Dog Winnie and Piglet Wilma Nurture Each Other From the Start

pig and special needs puppy snuggle
Credit: Courtesy of winnie_the_roo_ / Instagram

Most people don't know how affectionate pigs really are. But this—this is the true power of love, right here. Little pup Winston, known as Winnie, has birth defects that require a wheelchair and chest protector. Fortunately, Wilma—now more of a full-size pig—knew exactly how to gently roll and play with Winnie and provide him much needed daily cuddles. They're both thriving now!

Plenty of Feline and Equine Love Between Morris and Champy

Champy, the horse, and Morris, the cat, rubbing faces together
Credit: Courtesy of Jennifer Boyle

When former shelter cat Morris first wandered onto the porch of his new home, outgoing horse Champy was immediately smitten. Sure, they had other friends within their species, but these two quickly became boon companions, with Champy even taking Morris for daily rides! Their bond is so touching, it makes us squishy just looking at them.

The Definition of Cuddle Puddle: Bailey the Golden and Bunnies

Adult yellow lab retriever nestles baby bunnies
Credit: Courtesy of This is Bailey / YouTube

A terrific video to keep on repeat in case you're feeling blue is this one of Bailey, the pupster momma who stepped up to share extra furry comfort with lil' baby bunnies barely 30 days old. Millions of viewers simply couldn't get enough of their darling interactions, and there was probably a palpable calm around the world as a result.

Maisy the Pit Bull 'Barn Hippo' Is Enchanting

maisy the barn hippo nose to nose with a horse
Credit: Courtesy of Marisa Elbert

A star of our Better Together video series, this winsome pit bull isn't, obviously, really a hippo. She earned that nickname from her stocky build and the way she ambles through the barn. This lucky foster dog gained internet fame with her special "woo" instead of "woof and her incredibly goo—er, goofy personality.

Now Live! Baby Raccoon and Kitten Wrestling!

baby raccoon standing on log
Credit: L-N / Shutterstock

Here's a tussle we'd pay premium prices to see, but fortunately don't have to! Caught in the action by a veterinary technician, a rescued raccoon named Hansel or Gretel (nobody is sure, as there wasn't a nametag) and rescue kitten Wednesday just couldn't keep theircplayful paws off each other. And it's truly frisky fun, complete with rolling tumbles and sneak-attack pounces. 

Can't get enough of animal duos like a cat and bearded dragon, a mama hen and 'her' kittens, or a German shepherd playing with dolphins? Visit our unlikely friendships page for more!