labrador dog ducklings

Mountfitchet Castle

The internet loves this very good boy who ‘adopted’ nine ducklings

A very, very good boy indeed.


Stacey Ritzen

Internet Culture

Posted on May 22, 2018   Updated on May 21, 2021, 3:12 pm CDT

With all of the ills and seemingly never-ending tragedies facing our world today, we’re living in a day and age where feel-good, life-affirming stories are needed more than ever. And my friends, I am happy to report that is exactly what I have for you today. Meet Fred. Fred is a 10-year-old labrador retriever who resides at Mountfitchet Castle, a living history museum attraction in Essex, United Kingdom that features livestock that would have been kept by the original inhabitants.

When the mother of a flock of nine adorable baby ducklings living at the castle recently went missing, this very good doggo did what so many Maury guests have failed at over the years, and stepped up to the plate to take care of dem babies.

A castle spokeswoman told BBC News that after the ducklings’ mother disappeared last Thursday, staff brought them into the house since they were too young to fend for themselves. It was there that they met Fred, who belongs to the castle’s owner Jeremy Goldsmith.

“We brought the ducklings into the house as they are too young to fend for themselves,” Goldsmith told BBC News. “And Fred just took them under his paw—rather than his wing.”

Orphaned ducklings adopted by resident dog at Mountfitchet Castle

Nine lives for nine ducklingsFred the resident dog at the Castle stepped up to the challenge when nine little ducklings became orphaned last Thursday. The ducklings' mum had disappeared and a member of staff found them waddling around the castle grounds alone. The team were very worried about the ducklings but Fred, a 10 year old Labrador, immediately took to them and has been babysitting ever since.

Posted by Mountfitchet Castle on Monday, May 21, 2018

Fred is apparently used to being around rescued animals having grown up at the castle, and once apparently even helped care for an injured squirrel. Now, the ducklings and Fred are inseparable—following everywhere he goes, sleeping with him in his dog bed, and swimming around with him in the castle moat.

Fred’s story captured the hearts and attention of the internet, which collectively swooned over the unlikely pairing.

This isn’t the first time the Mountfitchet Castle has gone viral over one of its resident animals. In 2013, a 26-inch-tall Brahma cockerel named “Little John” made headlines for being the tallest in the world, according to the Guinness World Record.

H/T BBC News

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*First Published: May 22, 2018, 11:47 am CDT