Kolisi, a rhino orphan with a severely injured foot received a helping hand in the way of a special boot, now he is the life of the orphanage!
Undisclosed Location, South Africa (10 March 2020) – On the 7th of December the Rhino Orphanage received a 5-month-old Rhino Orphan from a private game reserve that appeared to have been attacked by Hyena. He was badly injured and a portion of his back foot had been gnawed off. He was left with only one toe.
The team quickly started treating all his wounds to prevent any further tissue damage. The vet felt positive about the treatment plan. The next day the orphanage named the new arrival Kolisi because he is a little fighter!
As Kolisi started to heal, he became feistier, so much so that Dr Pierre had to wear cricket pads to protect her shins from his charges. As he settled in, he became easier to work with but still made it known vocally that he didn’t love human affections.
He was fitted with a special boot to help heal his foot. Once he was mobile, boy did he get around!
Now three months later, Kolisi is the class clown of the orphanage. He gets into everything and often finds himself in trouble or in awkward situations.
Since sharing his story earlier this year, our hearts are so happy to see this little mischief running around leaving havoc and laughter in his wake. His fun-loving nature has meant that the orphanage now needs to start weaning him off human contact.
“Kolisi has been with us for nearly 3 months already and has become a confident young rhino that knows he is much stronger than his human moms, who have been with him 24/7. The 220kg+ baby now tries to climb on top of his carers all the time and has quite a lot of fun chasing them around.
To succesfully rehabilitate the young rhino, the time has come to loosen the bonds with fragile human carers, and give Kolisi a playmate that can handle his defiant personality, but babysteps at a time. Baby rhinos get very distressed very easily and can develop gastric ulcers because of it, so our team has to be subtle.
The first step for the carers is to sleep right outside his room door instead of next to him inside at night but still be with him during the day. Then introductions to his neighbours begin. Eve and Ryan are the youngest rhinos in the orphanage apart from Kolisi. Allthough Eve is already 16 months old and much bigger than Kolisi, she has a friendly personality and we will try to introduce Kolisi to the pair in the next couple of days under the watchful eyes of his carers and vet. Ryan is very calm by nature and just goes where ever Eve goes, in fact all he wants to do is taste Kolisi’s face (as seen in the second photo) kind off forcing a friendship through the posts. For now they have a chat through the safety of the barrier daily.”
Eventually, Kolisi will move on and spend time with only his kind. This is the best way to ensure the safety of his species. Take a look at some of the funny moments he has had at the orphanage since February.