The Jungle Book movie may be a lot of fun to watch, but stuff like that can’t happen for real — can it? Is it really possible for children to be raised by animals in the wild? Stories of children being raised by wild animals have been enduring enough that we wanted to do some research. What we found will astound you. Listed below are 18 true stories of children raised by feral animals!
Marina Chapman – Raised by Monkeys
A glance at Marina Chapman, an author who lives in England, would render you no great insight as to her past. Further investigation would reveal that Chapman was actually raised by capuchin monkeys who helped nurse her to health. Marina had been kidnapped as a child before being abandoned in the Colombian Jungle. A wild group of Capuchin Monkeys found her and the rest Jungle Book inspired history. Marina was taught to hunt, survive, and take care of herself for five years. Chapman was ‘rescued’ by slavers before being sold to a brothel owned by the Mafia. Chapman would eventually escape, learn language and verify her story. Wow.
Mexico’s Wolf Girl
This story can’t be verified by medical information but it has been enduring enough that there has to be truth to it. It was 1845 when a young Mexican girl was seen running with a pack of wolves as if she were one of them. She was seen several times over the next five or six years, always with the wolves, even eating fresh kills with her ‘pack’. Medical web sites nowadays would have a field day if they got her information. (The following image is just representational).
Sid Mohamed – Raised by Birds
We’re going to need to mainline some coffee service in order to read enough to understand this. Sid Mohamed’s story goes back to the ’40s when he was just five years old. Mohamed had wandered away from his family, while living in North Africa, before stumbling upon an Ostrich nest. He was there when the ostrich chicks hatched and the family took him in. He learned how to run with the birds and lived with them until he was 12 years old. He fed mostly on grass during this period. (The following image is just representational).
Abandoned Boy – Raised by Cats
The next time someone tells you that cats are uncaring animals you should pull up this story. A little boy, only one year old, was found in Argentina back in 2008. The tiny child had been abandoned and subsequently adopted by eight feral cats. When authorities found the child the cats were aggressive and protective of the child. The cats had been bringing scraps of food for the toddler — this lasted an entire winter. (The following image is just representational).
Oxana Malaya – Raised by Dogs
The story of Oxana Malaya is almost too wild to be believed. Malaya was found living within a kennel of wild dogs. Her parents, both alcoholic, had abandoned her when she was just three. Oxana crawled into a kennel and lived with the dogs for six years. She ran on all fours, panted and barked, and knew only a couple of words.
Chilean Dog Boy – Raised by Dogs
This unnamed child was abandoned by his 16 year old mother (you read that correctly) and he was subsequently thrown into the orphanage system. The child was abandoned once again at 10 years old when he was adopted by a pack of wild dogs while living in a cave. The dogs brought him food and protected him. The boy didn’t know how to speak much Spanish and opted instead to bark and growl.
Natasha Mikhailova – Raised by Dogs
Natasha Mikhailova is the Siberian Mowgli in our eyes. Mikhailova was abandoned by her parents and raised in a locked room by dogs and cats. She couldn’t speak and she ate on all fours, opting to copy the dog technique to eat. Mikhailova was eventually saved and not much else is known of her.
Ng Chhaidy – The Jungle Girl
This is, perhaps, the most impressive story on our list. Chhaidy was lost at only four years old in the Indian jungle near Myanmar. Chhaidy was left in the jungle, alone, for almost 38 years. Eventually Chhaidy was found naked, living feral in a cemetery. She has managed to rehabilitate to a certain degree, understanding a few English words, but she is shy and psychological work is barred from her for some reason.
Shamedo – The Wolf Boy
This story is much easier to verify than others on this list, though no less mythical seeming. Shamedo was found in 1972 living with a group of wolf cubs in the forest near Nayanpur. The Nayanpur villagers soon realized that Shamedo was more wolf than human. He liked to live in the dark, was friends with wolves, and opted for the company of animals over humans.
Lyokha – The Russian Wolf Boy
Lyokha’s story offers more questions than it does answer.s Lyokha was found in 2007 by Russian police. They initially thought he was only 10 years old but after cleaning him up revealed that he could be much older. Lyokha only barked or growled and he didn’t speak at all. He escaped after a warm shower and was never seen again. (The images are much too graphic as such, this is just representational.)
Andrei Tolstyk – Raised by Dogs
Andrei Tolstyk is another feral child from Sibera which makes us wonder what is going on over there. Tolstyk was abandoned by his garbage parents in the wild near Lake Baikal. Tolstyk was found by a guard dog and subsequently raised by the animal. Tolstyk was discovered and found to be almost completely feral — walking on all fours, afraid of human contact, and even sniffing and using his snout like a dog.
Dina Sanichar – The Indian Wolf-Child
Sanichar was discovered back in 1867 by a group of hunters when they found him in a cave of wolves. Dina was roughly six years old at the time and he refused to eat any meat that was cooked. It took him weeks before he would eat cooked food. Sanichar never learned to speak.
Saturday Mthiyane – The South African Monkey
Mthiyane was discovered in South Africa back in 1987. He had spent a year of his life being raised by monkeys in Kwazulu-Nata. By the age of 17 he still did not shake his upbringing, still walking like a monkey and refusing to eat food that had been cooked.
Daniel – The Peruvian Goat Boy
Daniel had been found in the Andes, Peru back in 1990. The story goes that he survived as a child by being raised by wild goats for almost a decade. Daniel drank goat milk and eat wild roots and berries.
Ivan Mishukov – The Alpha Dog
Mishukov lived with wolves starting at around four years of age after running away from an abusive and alcoholic man who had been dating his mother. He found a pack of dogs and earned their trust by bringing them food. Eventually the pack accepted him, making him their leader. Mishukov was caught and escaped three separate times by authorities.
Marcos Rodriguez Pantoja – The Wolf Child
Pantoja was abandoned in the mountains at the age of seven where he was adopted by a pack of wolves. He had been beaten often as a child and quickly took a shine to the wild animals who seemed so in kind. He spent 12 years in the mountains before coming back to society. Now 68 years old, Pantoja’s story is still ongoing as he gives bits and pieces of his time in the mountains.
The Leopard Boy of India
A two year old child was abandoned in the jungle’s of India back in 1912 when he was taken up by a Leopardess. The boy was raised like a cub for three years — until the Leopardess was tragically shot. The boy was completely feral, biting and growling anyone who came near him. It took years of rehabilitation for the boy to learn to speak and walk like a human.
Kamala and Amala – The Wolf Children
This is probably the most well documented story on our list and thus it lands at #1. Amala and Kamala were known as the wolf children after they were found back in 1920. The two children were discovered in Godamuri, India in the nearby jungles. The children had been living with a pack of wolves. Some believe that the children were merely mentally disabled while others believe that they were one of the best documented cases of feral children being raised by animals.