A newborn boy from Canada is still only three months old, but it seems like he already has himself a loyal friend for life.
Liel Ainmar Assayag, from Alberta, said that her adopted two-year-old cat Panda has been close to her son Sean since before he was born, laying atop her pregnant belly as if she sensed the baby inside.
But the bond was totally cemented shortly after Liel delivered Sean three months ago, and Panda now cuddles up to the baby — the same way she cuddled Liel’s stomach — and purrs happily.
Little cuddle buddies: Liel Ainmar Assayag’s son Sean and cat Panda are best friends
Protective pussycat: Panda, a two-year-old cat that Liel and her husband adopted, looks out for Sean and will guard his crib when he isn’t there
Liel and her husband have three cats, but it’s Panda that has taken to the couple’s new baby the most enthusiastically.
When they first adopted her, the cat was quickly affectionate, connecting with Liel and sleeping with her in bed. And that didn’t change when Liel found out she was expecting.
‘Once I got pregnant she started following me around the house, tucking her head on my belly, purring,’ she told BoredPanda.
‘When the belly got bigger, she started putting her paws around the belly so it looked like she [was] hugging it,’ she added in an interview with BuzzFeed.
Feline bumpy: When Liel was pregnant, Panda would like to cuddle on top of her belly
New addition to the family: He then bonded with her baby Sean soon after he was born, only taking a short time to sniff him out
When Sean was born, Liel smartly sent her husband home ahead of her with one of the baby’s worn onesies, so their pets would have a chance to get accustomed to the little one’s smell before he arrived at the house.
Then, for the first month, the cats mostly ignored him, only gradually inching closer and sniffing him.
Panda, of course, took to him the fastest, and it wasn’t long before she was back to cuddling with her owner and her newborn son.
‘Now, three months later, she jumps on the bed near him, smells him, sits next to him. You can clearly see she loves him,’ Liel told BoredPanda.
What a good helper! He likes to lay with Liel and Sean and purr, and will also let Liel know if Sean is crying while she is sleeping
Panda, a black and white cat, also likes to cuddle up to the mother and baby Liel has Sean laying on her stomach in bed. The cat will crawl up and put her paws on the baby’s bottom and purr contentedly.
She’s protective, too, even when Liel’s not around.
‘The cats are not allowed in the baby’s bed when the baby is in the crib, but every time I put the baby in the crib I can see lots of cat fur all over the bed — they were guarding the bed for him,’ she told Love Meow. ‘They call me at night when the baby is crying, laying down beside him to keep him safe.
‘I want to show the people that pets are great companions for kids and they can learn so much from them,’ she added to BuzzFeed. ‘For some people they are just pets. But for the pets, people are their family and that’s how we should treat them — as family. And you don’t give up on your family.’