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Dog "Adopts" 9 Orphaned Ducklings & It'll Melt Your Heart!

Meet Fred, a 10-year-old Labrador Retriever who is the "resident dog" at Mountfitchet Castle, a tourist attraction in England.

The castle is home to a number of rescued animals, but staff became concerned when they saw nine ducklings waddling around alone "looking a little bit lost" last week. Fortunately, Fred was there to help. 

"We brought the ducklings into the house as they are too young to fend for themselves, and Fred just took them under his paw--rather than his wing,"  owner Jeremy Goldsmith tells BBC News. 

"They absolutely adore him and he has now resigned himself to being a stay-at-home dad looking after the nine baby ducklings." 

The castle staff says that the ducklings sleep in the dog basket with Fred and follow him around, even hitching rides on his back when he swims in the castle's moat. 

Goldsmith says he expects Fred to continue babysitting for a few more weeks until the ducklings become more independent. 

They will then be free to stay at the castle or leave.