Charlie was only a few days old when his family completely deserted him.

With such limited experience on this planet, this tiny, newly orphaned South African hippo grew exceedingly malnourished and severely dehydrated very quickly. He also developed a scary bout of urachus.

 Thankfully, after a few days of surveillance, local conservation authorities brought him to the Thula Thula Rhino Orphanage, where rescuers jumped right in, tending to Charlie’s ailments and nursing him back from the brink. While at times the team wasn’t entirely sure he’d survive, these healers devoted themselves to little Charlie’s recovery.

 Though we’ll likely never know what prompted Charlie’s abandonment, we do know that he’s now finding solace in his devoted rescue team.

 Since arriving at the orphanage, Charlie’s attitude has dramatically improved, and he’s loving every chance he gets to explore the outdoors.

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