There are a lot of heartwarming animal rescue stories on the internet, almost all of them involving dogs or cats. But this touching story is all about a duck. Yes, a duck, the same bird that people are just as likely to kill, cook and eat as to pet, feed and love.
There's even a hit TV show all about a family that made it fortune by creating devices that make it easier to hunt down and shoot ducks.
All of which makes these photos, posted a couple of weeks ago to the image archive site imgur.com by user "hottpockets," just that much more touching. This man found the little duck in these photos abandoned in his backyard. And as very sadly often happens to abandoned ducks, the little guy was badly hurt.
The duck was most likely attacked by another animal.
"This is my duck Lucky, I found her huddled in the mud in a pond in my back yard with a wounded leg, scratched up back and busted beak," wrote the man who posted these pics. "Someone got her as a pet and dumped her when they didn't want to take care of her. I've been nursing her back to health since and she's making a great recovery."
Unfortunately, pet ducks are often purchased thoughtlessly and then abandoned by their new owners just as thoughtlessly.
"Ducklings, goslings and chicks are also bought on impulse, by people who don't know anything about how to raise or house them, because they are 'cute.' Usually this happens around Easter when pet shops and feed stores sell them as Easter basket stuffers. Some are even dyed, just like Easter eggs, green, blue, lavender or pink," according to the United Poultry Concerns site. "As their cuteness fades, and as they become big, and 'messy,' many will inevitably make the car trip to a pond or lake to 'fend for themselves.'"
Unfortunately, domesticated ducks and geese rarely survive long on their own in the great outdoors, often falling victim to other, bigger birds and animals.
But little "Lucky" here was one of the, well, lucky ones, because this duck happened to wander into the backyard of a person with a big heart.
We'll let the man who saved Lucky the Duck tell the story in his own words:
This is lucky after she got attacked. Since then she's been doing much better.
After dinner and her bath I sit her down next to me a few inches away...
but she always snuggles up close.
She likes being wrapped up to dry off...
cuddled up drying off safe and sound
After she's dry she gets to get back in her shoe box and watches me make sandwiches.
Relaxing watching me work at my desk.
She was excited to run errands with me...
But fell asleep on the way home.
Watching me fish
Eating some of the bait...
...and now some fish.
Today was a great day, the doctor says she gets to keep her foot and she has gained nearly 6 ounces since her last checkup.
All we can say, is, now we know what the expression "lucky duck" really means.