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After Months Of Serious TLC, Orphan Elephant Who Was Severely Ill Is Bouncing Back

World, meet Ellie.

For the past few months, Thula Thula Rhino Orphanage in South Africa has been keeping a pretty big secret. How big? As big as an elephant. Literally.

Since late October, they’ve been caring day and night for a sick baby elephant they named Ellie. 

They kept his identity hush-hush because of the severity of his health when he arrived and his caregivers weren’t quite sure if he was going to make it

Ellie (or Unbuntu, which is his formal name) was only 2-weeks-old when he arrived at the orphanage. He is still dependent on milk and when he arrived, it was discovered that he was suffering from large umbilical abscess, naval and joint problems and septicemia -- which is blood poisoning caused by bacteria or other toxins.

Ellie as we callhim (or Unbuntu,his formal name) with Karen Trendler

Posted by Thula Thula Rhino Orphanage on Wednesday, December 16, 2015

"You cannot even begin to imagine the intensity and challenge," Karen Trendler, a conservationist at Thula Thula, wrote on Facebook.

Their efforts have clearly paid off, because Ellie is now showing enough improvement that they finally feel comfortable letting the cat elephant out of the bag.

"He is still with us and finally stabilizing,” Trendler wrote. “It has been an intense and challenging time and an emotional roller coaster."

Ellie with Meg Richards

Posted by Thula Thula Rhino Orphanage on Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Having enough blankets and towels is always a big issue at wildlife rehab facility - thank you Sue Brown for the...

Posted by Thula Thula Rhino Orphanage on Wednesday, December 16, 2015

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