A caring dog has adopted seven baby opossums after they were rescued from a forest fire and left orphaned.
Biology student Talita Peixoto was given a litter of newborn marsupials to temporarily take care of before they could be released back into the wild.
She revealed that the joeys were saved by her friend Samuel Maria over a month ago following forest fires in the municipality of Monte Alto in Sao Paulo, Brazil.
Adorable footage shows the oppossum joeys getting along with Talita's dog, Jojo, and even clinging onto her back as if she were their mother.
Jojo also cleans them as she gently wraps them around her and gives them a gentle lick.
She said: "One day the little opossums seemed sad and dispirited because they were missing their mother, and my dog, Jojo Toddynho, laid down in front of me as I was feeding them.
"One of the little opossums went up to her and clung onto her. Seeing that situation, I thought: 'I'll put the others on top of her because they must be missing their mother'.
"When I placed them onto her, it was incredible because they grabbed onto her and she completely accepted them. It was so beautiful to see."
She said she then tried to put the opossums on her pet's back, and that the little joeys would even approach Jojo of their own accord.
Despite Jojo's maternal bond with the baby opossums, experts have warned that the biggest threat to the marsupials in urban areas are dog attacks and Talita has since stopped placing the joeys together with her pooch.
"I stopped the contact between them and my dog because they have to be afraid of people, dogs and other animals," she explained.
"If not, they could end up like their mothers – killed by dogs."
The joeys have now been released back to the wild after having reached the appropriate size and weight and having learnt to find water, shelter and food independently.
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