Woman Spots Tiny Lump Shivering On The Road — And Knows Just What To Do

“I was heartbroken … I couldn’t leave him.”

On a bitterly cold day in January, Julie Turner was driving around her New York neighborhood when she spotted a tiny lump shivering by the side of the road.

She decided to approach it, and as she got closer, she realized the striped lump was a scared guinea pig left to fend for himself.

Turner knew then she had to help.

guinea pig sitting near road

“I was heartbroken,” Turner told The Dodo. “I knew that little guy was probably struggling to find warmth and food. I couldn’t understand why someone would just leave their own pet to fend for themself like that.”

guinea pig in grass
Julie Turner

The guinea pig, who likely didn’t trust humans after being abandoned, shied away from Turner as she approached — and soon ran into the woods.

“I couldn’t leave him,” Turner wrote in a post on TikTok.


Turner tried tempting him with hamster treats, but it wasn’t working. The next day, with the help of a local animal rescue specialist, Turner was able to catch the guinea pig and bring him home.


guinea pig in carrier
Julie Turner

Finally safe and warm, the guinea pig slowly learned to trust again, and quickly devoured lots of snacks. He soon relaxed and showed his more affectionate side, snuggling in Turner’s arms.

“I went to the supermarket and got him all sorts of greens and other vegetables as well as guinea pig food and alfalfa,” Turner said. “I filled his cage and he ate so much! I was shocked to see how much food he could consume in such a short time, but I’m sure he was very hungry.”

guinea pig eating lettuce
Julie Turner

Trying to find the little guy a permanent home, Turner looked to a small-animal rescuer named Melissa. When Melissa came to pick him up, the pair had an instant, unexpected connection. It soon became clear that Melissa wanted to rescue him herself.

Now named Rufus, the once lonely and hungry guinea pig has plenty of love and snacks, and a family who will never leave him behind.

You can keep up with Turner and her pets on Instagram