In October 2016, a category four hurricane named Matthew was set to hit the South.
Katlyn Dence and her husband hunkered down in their house to prepare for the storm.
Although Katlyn and her husband live in Savannah, Georgia, the storm was still heading directly for them.
The government issued a mandatory evacuation, but because Katlyn’s husband is in the military, they were required to stay.
They got a lot of crazy weather with Hurricane Matthew, but when the storm passed, Katlyn finally let her dogs outside to run around.
As they were getting their energy out, one of the dogs started sniffing at something in the grass.
Katlyn noticed something moving, so she called her dog away from it and had her husband investigate.
What he found surprised all of them: a tiny 4-week-old Southern flying squirrel.
Dence, who is a veterinary technician, knew that the squirrel infant needed help, so she instantly brought him inside.
[H/T: The Dodo]
Katlyn told The Dodo: “He was still a baby, and shouldn’t have been out of his nest, and his eyes had just opened like a week or two before that. He was wet and cold, so we brought him inside. We didn’t have any power, so we had to keep him warm with hand warmers.”
Katlyn wasn’t sure if the squirrel would survive because he was so small, but she wanted to do everything she could to help him.
Once she brought him into her home, she named him Acorn and tried her best to make him comfortable.
Acorn was so scared at first that he kept trying to bite Katlyn and get away, so Katlyn did her best to just keep him warm and safe.
Not only was Acorn terrified after being separated from his mom, he was also very weak.
Acorn eventually got more comfortable with Katlyn, so she started keeping him in her pocket.
Katlyn only had access to kitten milk during the storm, so that’s what she fed Acorn until stores opened back up.
With Katlyn’s help, Acorn started growing bigger and stronger.
She wants to eventually release him back into the wild, but she needs to make sure he can care for himself before she does that.
Acorn is 5 months old now, and Katlyn assumes she’ll keep him until he’s around 1 year old.
Katlyn keeps Acorn in a large cage meant for sugar gliders, but when she’s home, he has free range of her room.
Apparently he loves to cuddle, fly around, and scavenge for nuts.
Katlyn says that after he’s had a day of running around, it’s normal for her to find nuts stashed in her pillowcase and in Acorn’s little house.
Acorn and Katlyn are pretty inseparable now, which is downright adorable.
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