Although we may not realize, it doesn’t take much to become a hero to a small furry friend.
Sometimes, all it takes is being in the right place at the right time. The following tale proves that, if you open your heart to an animal in need, anything can happen—including what you once never thought possible…
Florida man Jeff Longo was walking through his neighborhood when he stumbled upon a bizarre, tiny creature that would change his life forever. Although Longo had no experience with small animals and couldn’t even guess what he had found, he knew he needed to get the newborn out of the hot sun to save its life.
The Florida native had never seen a newborn animal like the one he discovered on a piping hot sidewalk. At just about one inch, it was barely bigger than his thumb and yet he could tell that the little one was still an infant and needed a mother’s love badly in order to survive.
Jeff Longo felt compelled to do something to help the small, nearly lifeless creature, realizing that it must have fallen out of a tree and was gripping onto life by a thread. Longo vowed he would do whatever he could to nurse it back to help, no matter what the animal grew up to be.
Longo began to hand feed the tiny creature himself and over time, it began to grow some fur and increase in size. He named the now furry little critter Biscuits.
Unaware of how to raise Biscuits and still having no inclination as to what she might be, Jeff Longo made another decision that would soon change everything. The tech-savvy new pet parent turned to image sharing site Imgur and Reddit, where he goes by 3sgtejeff to ask for help.
Unfortunately, Longo didn’t exactly get the response he was looking for from the Reddit users, who told him Biscuits wouldn’t be able to survive long in his care, without a mother. Especially once he found out what Biscuits really was.
After a few long weeks, Biscuits started to grow into her own and thanks to internet users, they discovered she was a type of southern flying squirrel who is nocturnal and doesn’t normally interact with humans.
Longo also learned that flying squirrels live off a diet of nuts, seeds, fruits, insects, small eggs, and birds. Yet, they also spend at least two months with their mothers before heading out into the world on their own, so the future for Biscuits didn’t look bright.
For two months, Longo refused to leave Biscuits alone, knowing that she needed a “mother”. Although it wasn’t what her brothers or sisters likely ate, Biscuits thrived on an unconventional diet of puppy formula mixed with heavy cream.
From the moment Longo first laid eyes on Biscuits, he completely doubted the tiny creature would survive. But as each day passed, the new pet parent was impressed with how Biscuits grew to be healthy, stronger, and active with his new family.
The Newest Family Member
Although Longo admitted online he had to watch his dogs so they don’t accidentally squish Biscuits, he was amazed at how they took a liking to the tiny squirrel and how she formed a surprising bond with them, too.
The Escape Artist
Although she is a type of animal who is rarely domesticated, Longo revealed online that Biscuits is much like any other small pet and escapes from time to time. “When she first started becoming mobile, she escaped… I found her in the bathtub in the morning,” he wrote.
Yet since Longo has been imprinted on Biscuits, the nocturnal rodent will likely die if she ever tries to return to the wild, even though she seems to long for nature. “She runs around me like I’m a big tree… then jumps on things and then jumps back… gets excited… starts chirping… rinse and repeat,” Longo wrote.
The Best Friends
“She has a big cage and semi-free reign of the house when I’m available to supervise,” Longo wrote, explaining that although Biscuits is curious about her roots and some could even argue she shouldn’t have been raised in a home.
The Friendly Pet
“She wouldn’t last five minutes in the wild now,” Longo wrote. “She is super friendly to people and not afraid of animals.” Longo clearly has a unique relationship with her loving family who wouldn’t change her arrival for anything.
“I found her half dead, lying on the sidewalk in the Florida sun, I posted pictures on Reddit that day and had a bunch of know it alls tell me she would die, because I am not an animal rehabber,” Longo first wrote on Reddit.
The Tiny Hero
Yet just a few months later, he has proved anything is possible, showing the tiny, domesticated squirrel’s unique skills and playful personality.
“Well, Biscuits is about three months old now and is super awesome… and healthy,” he continued. “Her favorite food is pecans and she enjoys jumping on everything and terrorizing the dogs.”
“From now on it is my life’s ambition to have an adorable animal living in my shirt pocket,” one Reddit user wrote. “Everyone should have a pocket squirrel sidekick,” said another. Clearly, this is one trend that just might catch on.
Are you feeling the love from Biscuits and her new family? Please SHARE this story with your animal-loving friends on Facebook today!
The Biscuits Effect
Since Longo first shared his amazing survival story, countless people have donated on GoFundMe to get Biscuits a bigger home to jump and fly around in, since she can never return to the wild. “I’m stuck with the little fluffball,” Longo said… and he wouldn’t have it any other way.
[Featured Image: Imgur / Jeff Longo]