Back in 2016, Jeff Longo spotted a distressed critter on the side of the road. It was tiny, alone, and looked to be in trouble. Instead of bringing the creature to a veterinarian, Jeff decided to do something extreme -- nurse it back to health.
The thing is, Jeff had no idea what the creature actually was, and he was pretty surprised when it finally grew up.
Jeff Longo Spotted A Tiny Creature On The Sidewalk
During an afternoon walk in Tampa, Florida, native Jeff Longo spotted something on the sidewalk. It was furry, tiny, and seemed to be in a world of pain with the blistering hot street being pounded by the heat of the sun.
It didn't look too good for the critter. So, Jeff did something other people most likely wouldn't think to do. He decided it was up to him to save the creature, whatever it was.
The Creature Was Half-Dead
Being that it was Florida, it wasn't unusual for Jeff to see different creatures on the side of the road. But this was a baby, and it was in desperate need of some help. According to Jeff, the poor thing was pretty much half-dead when he stumbled across it.
But he wasn't about to leave it lying in the hot sun. So, he picked the tiny critter up and drove it back home to St. Petersburg.
He Named The Critter 'Biscuits'
When Jeff finally made it back to his home in St. Peterburg, he really had no clue where to start. First things first, though, he decided the tiny creature needed a name. Jeff wound up naming it Biscuits!
But he was scared for Biscuits. She was so tiny and helpless, and Jeff had no idea what she was or how much larger she would grow. Everything was a total mystery.
What Was Biscuits?
Jeff was at a loss. The creature was so tiny and distressed he had no clue where to start. He didn't even know what type of rodent Biscuits was! How in the world was he supposed to help when he didn't even know what he was dealing with?
Thankfully, when there's a computer available, there is a way. So, Jeff did the only reasonable thing he could think of -- he took to the internet and hoped for the best.
He Took To The Internet With Surprising Results
He skipped right over Google, not really knowing where to start on the search engine since Biscuits was so tiny and didn't have any notable features. Instead, he hopped on over to Reddit, hoping other forum writers would have some clue as to what type of creature Biscuits was.
As it goes on the internet, people weren't exactly the most helpful. In fact, they started judging Jeff's ability to raise Biscuits by himself.
People Didn't Think Jeff Would Keep It Alive
The people answering Jeff's Reddit post about Biscuits weren't exactly helpful when it came to species identification. Instead, they were telling him there was no way he'd be able to keep the critter alive. But Jeff was ready to prove them wrong.
He continued searching on the internet and, finally, he came across the answer he was looking for. Jeff finally knew what type of creature he was dealing with and how to take care of it!
Biscuits Was A Southern Flying Squirrel
After some searching, Jeff finally came across Biscuits's species -- a southern flying squirrel! With the identification, Jeff would be able to further research the best ways to care for such an animal, as it is technically wild.
Thankfully, the shopping list he'd have to procure was totally doable! As it turned out, this particular species lived off nuts, insects, eggs, seeds, fruit, and even birds. Now, it was off to shop!
Biscuits Should Be Living In The Woods Or Forest
Biscuits was a long way from home. According to Jeff's research, this particular species tends to live in forest and wooded areas. How did Biscuits wind up on the side of the road in hot, humid, and sunny Florida?
Either way, it was now up to Jeff to take care of her since Biscuits was separated from her mother. But one question still remained: was Jeff going to be able to keep the tiny squirrel alive?
Southern Flying Squirrels Stay Their Mom For Two Months
Southern flying squirrels tend to stay with their moms for at least two months. Biscuits was way under that age, and Jeff was afraid he wasn't going to be able to nourish the tiny creature and keep her alive.
Poor Biscuits was at a huge disadvantage. But Jeff was in it for the long haul and began coming up with plans to keep his new friend alive.
Jeff Brought Biscuits Everywhere
Jeff did his best to keep Biscuits alive and well-nourished. He started by bringing the tiny flying squirrel with him everywhere, not really trusting to leave her on her own. Biscuits was supposed to stick by its mother's side for two months, after all!
The creature was so small that Jeff couldn't really feed it the typical nuts, seeds, and other whole foods. So, he came up with another solution.
Biscuits Was Bottle Fed Puppy Formula And Heavy Cream
Since Biscuits was too small to eat whole food, Jeff came up with another way to feed the tiny flying squirrel. He mixed together puppy formula and heavy cream, feeding Biscuits from a tiny bottle.
As it turned out, the mixture was just what the doctor ordered! Biscuits was growing bigger and stronger with each passing day. Jeff surely made a huge difference in this tiny creature's life and proved all of those Redditors wrong!
A Happy And Healthy Squirrel
Biscuits was getting stronger and bigger by the day. The tiny woodland creature was looking more and more like an actual squirrel and less like the almost-dead critter Jeff had originally picked up on the side of the road.
Now, Biscuits was happy and healthy. And, even better, she had a new family to hang out with! Better yet, the family didn't just include Jeff; there was someone else who Biscuits got to call family.
Jeff Had Some Curious Dogs
Jeff wasn't the only one in the home when he nourished Biscuits back to health. He also had dogs who were very curious about the new animal in the house. Jeff's even admitted to being a bit skeptical about bringing Biscuits home at first.
He didn't know how his dogs were going to react to the tiny, malnourished animal he picked up on the side of the road. Thankfully, they were nothing more than curious.
Were The Dogs Going To Accidentally Squish Biscuits?
Even though Jeff's dogs were nothing more than curious, he was still afraid they'd accidentally squish the tiny Biscuits. She was so tiny at the time and could hardly move. The last thing she needed was a big dog stepping or sitting on her!
Thankfully, that never happened. And Biscuits was able to gain back her strength. Now that Biscuits was happy and healthy, there was one question remaining -- was Jeff going to return her to the wild?
Jeff Decided Against Releasing Biscuits
Jeff wasn't sure if he should return Biscuits to the wild. She had regained her strength and was growing at a rapid pace. Maybe she was better off living with the rest of her kind in the forest.
In the end, he decided against releasing her. Jeff had acted as Biscuits's mom pretty much since her infancy, and releasing her back into the wild could do a lot more harm than good. She wouldn't know how to hunt properly.
Biscuits Was Very Happy With Jeff
With the lack of necessary survival skills, Jeff decided it was best if Biscuits remains with him and his dogs as part of the family. He didn't want any harm coming to his new friend. And, besides, she was very happy where she was!
According to Jeff, "She runs around me like I'm a big tree… then jumps on things and then jumps back… gets excited… starts chirping… rinse, and repeat."
It Wasn't All Smooth Sailing
And while Biscuits was getting healthier and growing, getting her to that point wasn't exactly all smooth sailing for Jeff. At one point, he almost lost her! According to Jeff, when Biscuits first began spreading her wings and becoming mobile, he lost track of her.
On Reddit, he wrote, "When she first started becoming mobile, she escaped… I found her in the bathtub in the morning." Well, at least she wasn't actually lost.
Biscuits Was Living The Dream
His self-described "little fluffball" might have a bit of naughty behavior, but she's everything Jeff could have hoped for in a wild animal he rescued from the side of the road. And she's pretty much living the dream!
According to Jeff, "She has a big cage and semi-free reign of the house when I'm available to supervise. She wouldn't last five minutes in the wild now. She is super friendly to people and not afraid of animals."
She Loves Her Hammock And Jeff's Shirt Pocket
Biscuits was settling in nicely, enjoying her time lounging in the hammock located in her oversized cage or in the comfy confines of Jeff's shirt pocket. The best part was that because she was living with Jeff and his dogs, Biscuits could live to be around ten years old!
She was going to have a nice, healthy, and long life with Jeff. But before the two could celebrate, Jeff had a score to settle with some people on Reddit.
Jeff Let People Know How Biscuits Was Doing
To his doubters on Reddit, Jeff wrote, "I posted pictures on Reddit that day and had a bunch of know-it-alls tell me she would die because I am not an animal rehabber. Biscuits is about three months old now and is super awesome… and healthy..."
"Her favorite food is pecans, and she enjoys jumping on everything and terrorizing the dogs." Here is to Jeff and Biscuits having a happy life together with all of the pecans she can eat!