This Toronto chipmunk has more than 2 million followers on TikTok
Charlie the chipmunk first made an appearance in a Toronto backyard about four years ago and now the little guy has charmed his way up to over two million followers on TikTok.
Borjana Anicin tells blogTO she first met Charlie in her parents' Etobicoke backyard about four years ago.
"So I saw a little thing, I would say, moving back and forth. And at that time, I didn't really know what it was," Anicin says.
The first time she approached the chipmunk, he ran away. It took about a week of her offering him nuts before he got close.
"I would say about a week after is when he started to trust me and started eating from my hands," she says.
She now feeds him regularly in the backyard from March until he goes into hibernation, around November. Charlie still doesn't trust her parents.
Anicin works fulltime for RBC and never really had an interest in social media but she had more time during lockdown, so she started creating and posting videos to TikTok and then Instagram.
"If the pandemic never happened," she says "I don't think that people would know anything about Charlie. Only my closest friends."
Although she away moved from her parents' home, Anicin lives about eight minutes away and continues go back. Her job is now remote, so she is able work there and visit with Charlie (and her parents).
Anicin keeps coming back because Charlie is unique.
"He has an interesting personality," she says. "And let me tell you, I've seen quite a few chipmunks in the backyard. He's definitely a special one."
She admits that there is a lot of work behind the videos, and that Charlie doesn't always follow commands.
"It takes patience to get it right and sometimes Charlie's not in the mood."
But Anicin believes he is very smart.
"For a chipmunk, he understands quite a lot."
People seem to like the little guy's antics and personality. When Anicin posted her first video on TikTok she went from no followers to around 150,000 overnight.
"It's crazy, I never expected this to happen."
While she plans to keep posting one or two videos a week, there may come a point where there is nothing new to post. Anicin doesn't want the videos to become repetitive.
For now, she likes making people smile, particularly during this rough time.
"That's my whole purpose of Charlie's videos, to make people happy, smile, especially during these times where COVID is still ongoing. People need that."
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