(Main pic, Nolia, a 1.5 year old Boxer Mix up for adoption now.  For more information click HERE).

While visiting the drive-thru ATM recently a friend told me she spotted a mother duck with seven fuzzy chicks following her in single file.  But then she watched in horror as the mother walked over a sewer grate and the babies fell…plunk, plunk, plunk, through the holes, until all seven were gone! 

Fortunately a kind gentleman was on hand who was happy to help, and he was able to remove the heavy grate.  There at the bottom of the drain were seven little ducklings swimming around in circles, while their mom quacked her distress and alarm nearby.  The man’s arm was long enough to reach the little ones, and one by one they were reunited with their mother.  We jokingly said perhaps she was tired of looking after seven kids and purposely walked over the grate…..human parents have days like that, too.

How wonderful that a potential tragedy was avoided, with the help of two good Samaritans who were willing to make the effort to save the ducklings.   (Below, over a year resident Carlos need someone to adopt him very much.  Please consider him and for more information CLICK HERE).


One early summer we had three baby ducks swimming in our pool, while their mom called frantically from the other side of our back fence.  The little ones could squeeze through, but she was too large.  Eventually two of the babies hopped out and joined their mom, and off she trotted, leaving one still in our pool.  It didn’t seem to be able to master the jump over the edge as its siblings had. 

Needless to say I was very upset, thinking this poor duckling should not be in chlorinated water for an extended length of time, and there certainly wasn’t anything in there it could eat.  I called a wildlife rescue centre and was advised to take it to the nearest natural water location, as that’s probably where the mother would have gone.  The closest pond was not really accessible by people, so we took it to the Botanical Gardens, praying it was old enough to be on its own and would be accepted by the other ducks.  It’s difficult to know when to intervene with nature, but it’s also hard to stand by and do nothing. (Below, 5 year old Porsche is ready for a new place for her paws.  For more information click HERE).


This year it was a turtle that came for a swim in our pool, much to our surprise.  Where would it come from?  Research indicated it was a painted turtle and should not be in chlorine either.  The nearby golf course now has one more addition to its already booming turtle population….turtle paradise, from my point of view.

I cannot begin to imagine the type of crises the Humane Society staff and agents find themselves dealing with on a daily, or even hourly, basis.  They are truly good Samaritans extraordinaire, committed to giving compassionate care to all the animals — domestic and wild alike — that they encounter.  I was told that over one hundred ticks were removed from a stray dog finally caught by Shelter staff recently.  Not an easy task!!

How heart warming it was to read a feature in our local paper describing the project taken on by staff at a local Florist, creating beautiful bouquets for those working and volunteering at the Humane Societies in the area.  They are very deserving of this recognition and should receive support and appreciation from us all.  Theirs is a monumental job, physically and emotionally, a rollercoaster ride of joy and sadness. (Below, 8 year old Rufus was dumped at the shelter and needs another chance.  Click HERE for more information)


The Niagara Falls Humane Society needs your support, through volunteering, donations of food and other supplies, and of course monetary contributions, to help care for the shelter pets.  And it’s a great place to find a companion who needs a new home.  Why not take time to visit the Shelter, or one of our satellite cat adoption centres (Cats on Queen, at 4428 Queen Street, and For the Love of Cats, at 3770 Montrose Road, Unit 7).  Perhaps it’s your turn to be the Good Samaritan.

This week’s column written by Phyllis Babyk

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