Rescuing animals is one of the most selfless things a person can do. Usually, these animals don't get to say 'thank you' but in rare cases, like this one, they find a way to show their rescuers how grateful they are.
GiGi is a gorgeous horned owl who was trying to survive on her own but, unfortunately, got hurt. She was thankfully rescued in time and taken to Mississippi's Wild at Heart Rescue. She had suffered major head trauma.
GiGi had a massive concussion as a result of the injuries, which the rescue team suspected was due to being hit by a car. The owl also had a condition known as aspergillosis, which is similar to pneumonia.
The founder and director at Wild at Heart told The Dodo that GiGi was so ill that she lost a lot of weight while receiving treatment. She desperately needed help and not just physical support, but emotional, too. And there was one person who would make sure GiGi found her way to health and happiness. That was Douglas "Doug" Pojeky, the president of the rescue organization.
The bird thrived under Doug's care, and over time, even developed a close bond with her rescuer.
One day, Doug, who had been visiting his family, thus depriving the bird of his company for some time, returned to give GiGi an examination. As soon as the owl spotted Doug, it was very clear that she recognized him. After dancing excitedly on his arm, GiGi walked gently up Doug's chest to give him a hug, her magnificent wings draped around her best human.
It was an incredible display of love between bird and man. Doug also revealed that GiGi's action was very meaningful to him.
The pictures of this lovely moment were shared on the rescue's Facebook page and fans can't get over the warmth and beauty of it.
What should you do if you come across an injured bird
According to the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds, there are a few things you should think about if you see an injured bird.
- Catching an injured bird may be difficult, but you have to be careful and handle it firmly and gently;
- Small birds can be held with one hand. Place your hand over the bird so its head fits between your forefinger and middle finger. Then the rest of your finger will be wrapped around the wings;
- If the bird is medium-sized, use two hands, one over each wing. If it's large, you may need to call an expert because there is a higher risk of injury to you, unless you're used to handling birds that size;
- When you catch the bird, place it in a well-ventilated covered-box and either call a vet or take it to one for treatment. The darkness helps to reduce stress to the bird and is also the best treatment for shock.
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Don't ignore a bird, or any animal that needs your help. Who knows, you may also get your own special bird-hug!