Mom Adopts Puppy Without Paw To Help Daughter Without Hands Embrace Uniqueness

2-year-old without hands adopts puppy without paw

When kids are young, they haven’t yet developed a framework of how things are “supposed to” be. They approach things with curiosity as opposed to judgment, learning as much as they can about the world around them. It takes time for kids to notice things that differentiate them from their peers, and unfortunately, many kids start to view the things that make them unique as negatives. To preemptively instill confidence in her 2-year-old daughter, one mom decided to call for backpup.

Vanessa McLeod from Vancouver B.C. learned that her daughter would be born without hands when she was just 19 weeks pregnant. Though her doctor urged her to consider the quality of life for someone born without hands, McLeod knew that whatever obstacles her daughter faced, they would face them together. Now 2 years old, Ivy is happy and thriving.

“Her favorite thing to do is color and she just uses her toes to hold the markers so she has just learned to do things differently,” McLeod told CTV News.


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A post shared by Vanessa McLeod (@vanessamcleod_)

As Ivy grows older, McLeod knows it’s only a matter of time before Ivy starts questioning why she was born different. It’s inevitable, unfortunately – kids make cruel comments, whether they’re intentionally cruel or not. Those comments penetrate our own self-image, and sometimes, they completely overtake the way we see ourselves.

McLeod decided that she needed to give Ivy something solid to point to if she begins to question her own beauty and value, something to remind her that those who look different are just as beautiful as their peers. The determined mom settled on finding a dog for the family, one with a limb difference just like Ivy.

“You know you were born that way but different is beautiful,” she imagined telling her daughter, “and this puppy was also born that way and that is also a beautiful thing.”

Beginning what she anticipated would be a long and difficult search, McLeod set out to find the perfect pup for Ivy. In what felt like a magical turn of events, the search was over just as quickly as it started.

“But on April 6th, the day I initially posted… that very same day, a tiny little puppy was born IN OUR CITY with a little lucky fin,” McLeod wrote on Instagram. “If that’s not fate, I don’t know what is. It’s so very clear to us that she is meant to be part of our family.”


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A post shared by Vanessa McLeod (@vanessamcleod_)

As soon as Lucky is old enough to be adopted, she’ll begin her life with her new family. Lucky and Ivy have already formed an incredible bond, one that will only grow stronger once they’re together full time. Though the adorable pup bears the name, everyone involved is likely feeling pretty dang lucky themselves.

Little Girl Is Comforted by Sweet Dog During Her Dad’s Funeral

Passing Dog Comforts Girl During Dad's Funeral
(YouTube/CBS Evening News)

6-Year-old Raelynn Nast from Fort Smith, Arkansas was a daddy’s girl through and through. She loved spending time with her dad, and took great pride in introducing him to everyone she knew. Tragically, Raelynn’s dad Davey developed colon cancer and passed away at just 41 years old. The Nast family was devastated, but Raelynn was hit particularly hard by the loss of her hero and father.

Losing a parent is always heartbreaking, but at just six years old, the enormous loss is even more difficult to comprehend. Every aspect of life changes when a child loses a parent, and that level of grief is extremely challenging to process at any age.

On the day of Davey’s visitation, family and friends alike gathered to mourn. While many adults feel comforted by the support these visitations bring, kids often cope differently. When Raelynn spotted a jogger run by outside with her dog, in that moment, she wanted nothing more than to soak up the soft comfort that animals bring.

“She was like, ‘May I pet your puppy?’ And I was like, ‘Yeah, of course, as long as your parents don’t mind,'” Emily Beineman recalled to CBS.

Beineman was unaware of the circumstances that brought the 6-year-old to the funeral home, but Raelynn soon explained that her own dad was laying inside. As Beineman’s dog Blue soaked up the little girl’s attention, Raelynn had a touching idea.

For her entire life, the 6-year-old proudly introduced every new friend to her dad. With the clarity and pureness only a child can possess, Raelynn decided that she wanted to enjoy that tradition one final time.

“I asked if she wanted to come in and see my dad,” Raelynn said.

Torn between her desire to support the young girl and the knowledge that she was about to walk into a funeral home with her dog and running gear, Beineman decided that Raelynn was more important than whatever a room full of strangers may think.

“Everyone was kind of looking around like, ‘Where did she come from?’” Raelynn’s mom Lacey recalled. “And she came in right next to Rae like they’d known each other for so long. There was that connection there.”

Watch This Incredible Cat Leap From a Burning Building and Walk Away Unscathed

Cat Leaps Burning Building

Cats can be indifferent because they literally have superpowers. There’s a reason why they’re said to have nine lives. As a dog person, I wrote this off as cat propaganda in an effort to make up for their erratic temperament. Then I saw one literally jump out of a burning building and walk away unscathed.

It happened recently in Chicago, as the local Fire Department responded to a burning building. Bystanders were filming their firefighters in action when they were startled by a cat JUMPING OUT OF A FIFTH-FLOOR WINDOW.

A crowd of people can be heard gasping when the cat came flying out the window, but it was apparently unharmed and trotted away with indifference; like jumping out of burning buildings was just another thing on the to-do list for Thursday.

The department shared the video saying “nine lives for a cat that jumped from fire at 65th and Lowe. Cat hit grass bounced and walked away!”

Another Twitter user pointed out how insanely narrow the landing area was for what is obviously a witch’s familiar cute little kitty to land in.

Totally bonkers. The video quickly went viral because you don’t often see literal superpowers from the animal world. Even if you are more of a dog guy, you can’t help but be impressed by this complete and totally wild feat.

Italian Firefighter Overcome With Emotion After Saving Kitten

Italian firefighter emotional after rescuing kitten from hole

Few occupations allow you to experience the full spectrum of human emotion quite like being a firefighter. The rush of adrenaline as you respond to a call, the highs of successful days, and the lows when things don’t go as planned. Firefighters have the unique responsibility of addressing unusual emergencies, staying calm while quickly formulating plans for action. There aren’t many things quite as satisfying as saving a life (or so I imagine), but it’s rare that we get a glimpse into the lives of heroes celebrating their wins.

In a recently resurfaced clip, we’re invited to share a touching moment with an Italian firefighter after an incredible rescue. A small kitten around three weeks old fell into a hole in the road, and the small bundle of fur had neither a route or the motor skills to escape. Fortunately, someone heard the kitten’s cries and contacted emergency services.

Without a doubt, working as a firefighter has its fair share of heartbreak. The firefighter in the viral 28-second clip likely really needed a win, and the tiny kitten needed a hero. When the two came together, it was nothing short of magic.

The clip opens with a group of several firefighters surrounding a hole in the ground, one of them laying on his stomach as we hear the heartbreaking cries of a terrified kitten. As the firefighter sits up, we see that his mission was a success – he managed to pull the tiny kitten to safety.

Our hero holds up the kitten, gently petting the small ball of fur as he continues to let out panicked mews. Taking a deep breath as he realizes the initial danger is gone, the firefighter truly looks at the kitten for the first time and becomes immediately overwhelmed with emotion.

In 28 seconds, the team of firefighters moves from the tense focus of addressing a dangerous situation to the celebration of a job well done. The hero of the day sheds happy, relieved tears as a fellow firefighter pats him on the back both in comfort and congratulations.

Though the video is several years old, it received over 200,000 likes on Twitter when it was reposted by a user named Thund3rB0lt. Twitter users praised the hero for saving the small kitten’s life and celebrated the emotional win right along with him. No matter what’s happening in the world, we’ll never get tired of watching touching moments like this.

Monty Python-Esque Parrot Gets Stuck on Roof, Tells Rescuers to F*ck Off

Parrot stuck on roof tells rescuer to f*ck off

If you could insert yourself in any movie or TV show, what would it be? Apparently, these members of the London Fire Brigade chose Monty Python’s Flying Circus, because there is simply no other explanation for the absurdity of this rescue mission. The iconic sketch comedy troupe already covered, uh – ex-parrots, and now they’ve evidently moved on to the fowl-mouthed variety.

Jessie the macaw escaped from her owner’s home, perching on a neighbor’s roof and refusing to come down for several days. Fearing for her beloved parrot’s safety and running out of ideas, Jessie’s owner contacted the London Fire Brigade for help after the RSPCA was unable to retrieve the feathered fugitive.

Watch Manager Chris Swallow (swallow like the type of bird? Seriously?) and his team responded to the call, making their way to the house on Cuckoo Hall Lane (seriously?!) and devising a plan.

“Our crew manager was the willing volunteer who went up the ladder to try and bring Jessie down,” Swallow recalled in the incident report. We were told that to bond with the parrot, you have to tell her ‘I love you’, which is exactly what the crew manager did.”

“While Jessie responded ‘I love you’ back, we then discovered that she had a bit of a foul mouth and kept swearing, much to our amusement.”

Initial fears that Jessie was injured were quelled once the perturbed parrot flew into a nearby tree, but the rescue workers were unable to capture the crude critter. Fortunately, Jessie soon returned home of her own accord. As a way of thanking those who attempted to help her beloved bird, Jessie’s owner sent a G-rated video to the fire brigade.

“What do you want to say to the fire brigade that helped you come home?” Jessie’s owner asks. At first, Jessie says nothing. She sits quietly on her perch, with the look of a mildly irritated kid being forced to apologize when they absolutely aren’t sorry. After a bit more coaxing and a bit more pouting, Jessie quietly mumbles “I love you” and all is forgiven.

ASPCA’s ‘Kid of the Year’ Saved Over 2,000 Dogs Running Nonprofit With His Mom

ASPCA's Kid of the Year saves dogs from kill shelters through nonprofit
(YouTube/Project Freedom Ride)

Overpopulation in animal shelters is an enormous problem, with many resorting to euthanasia when faced with overcrowding. Most animals end up in shelters because of circumstances completely unrelated to their adaptability, which means that countless animals are put to sleep every year simply because there aren’t enough homes for them.

Roman McConn has always loved animals, even asking for donations to his favorite dog rescue in lieu of gifts since his fourth birthday. Roman’s mom Jennifer McConn shares her son’s passion for animals and encourages him at every turn, even adopting a rescue dog from a kill shelter so Roman could have his own furry companion.

When Roman’s dad received orders to serve overseas, the family relocated from Texas to Washington. Of course, one of the first courses of action after relocating was finding a new shelter to volunteer their time. Once the animal-loving duo began lending a hand at a local shelter, they realized the overcrowding problem in Washington was far less severe than it was in Texas.

“I would joke with Texas Rescues about an underground railroad for dogs up to Washington because the world for a dog, generally speaking, was so much better up here in Washington than down there in Texas,” Jennifer wrote on the Project Freedom Ride Website. “And so it was born … on December 6th, 2016 Project Freedom Ride had its first transport of 31 dogs from Texas to Washington.”

Since the founding of Project Freedom Ride just five years ago, the volunteer-based foundation has rescued over 2,000 dogs from euthanasia. 2,000 dogs got a second chance at life thanks to Roman and Jen, not to mention their trusty volunteers. In 2018, Roman was named the ASPCA’s (American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals) “Kid of the Year” thanks to his tireless efforts to save as many dogs as he possibly could.

Project Freedom Ride is extremely active to this day, posting adoptable dogs as well as dogs who need transportation on their Facebook page. Roman remains the face of the rescue, sharing personal videos with dogs looking for homes. Roman and his mom are true heroes, giving us a touching reminder that you’re never too young to make a difference.

Relax, Be Chill, There’s Just a Tiger On the Loose in a Texas Suburb

Tiger on the loose in texas

There are some steadfast rules to neighborhood life. You wave to every car even though you can barely remember a single neighbor’s name. You don’t leave your trash cans out too long, and you have a day or two, either way, to cut your grass after your neighbors do. And you don’t let your tiger roam free.

OK, well, the tiger part only applies if you live in Texas. One Houston street got the shock of a lifetime earlier this week when a Bengal Tiger was spotted walking around. Someone pulled his car over to yell at the owner to get him to get his tiger back inside. The entire episode blew up on social media, and why wouldn’t it when you have a jungle predator strolling around. This feels like some ill-conceived jungle book parody, but nope, just some dude’s tiger is on the loose.

A driver (apparently an off-duty cop) pulled over (lord knows why) to bark at the guy. It was around 8 p.m. when the big cat was spotted, calls were placed to police, etc., etc. But the man pulled over to yell at the owner, sensibly, I guess, to get his animal back inside.

Why you would get out of your car when the aforementioned tiger was on the loose is equally deranged, in my humble opinion, but it led to a standoff that captivated the entire internet.

“Ge the f— back inside, f— you and your f—-ing tiger,” the man said. He later told reporters the man said “Ok, ok” and kissed the tiger, and pulled him back inside. Police came to the neighborhood to investigate the incident. Apparently, the man put a tiger into an SUV and drove away. The cops apprehended the man BUT THE TIGER IS STILL ON THE LOOSE. VERY CHILL AND COOL.

Maybe let the tiger-charmer out of jail until this thing is corralled. Either way, if you see a Bengal tiger wandering around your neighborhood in Houston, just ignore it, because all the best jokes have been done on Twitter.

The CEO of the Humane Society told reporters it is incredibly inhumane to have tigers in your house, you know, just in case you were on the fence (the one the tiger jumped) about whether or not you should have one as a pet.

“People have died from this,” she said.

At the same time, there is no place for this in suburb life. Having a tiger on the loose is a very 2020 thing, and frankly, we have all moved on to a better place.

Paws Whatever You’re Doing, The Golden Retriever Experience Is Open Fur Business

Soak up some puppy love at the Golden Retriever Experience

Adopting a dog is an enormous responsibility, one that unfortunately isn’t feasible for everyone. During the beginning of quarantine, people flocked to adopt animals before realizing their pre-COVID lifestyle wasn’t necessarily compatible with pets. As a result, shelters were flooded with animals once people returned to work – a sad situation to be sure, and one that the Golden Retriever Experience (GRE) is trying to mitigate.

Located in the English West Somerset district lies every dog lover’s dream – a haven filled with a pack of trained golden retrievers who eagerly await their many visitors. Nicolas Grant-St James and his daughter Lauren would do anything for their dogs, but after realizing not everyone had the opportunity to own dogs themselves, they set out on a journey to fill that void.

Nicolas is known as the UK’s dog whisperer, and his passion for understanding and training dogs was fundamental to the GRE’s early days. Initially, the duo formed a training program to help others understand dog psychology as well as train their canine companions. Their own pack of Golden Retrievers helped clients work through the training process, and understandably, the pups quickly stole the show.

With encouragement from friends and clients alike, the father-daughter duo opened their very own “Disneyland for Dogs” in 2017, a place where everyone is welcome to soak up all the puppy love they could possibly want.

“The GRE has been built on the life-long love and dedication we’ve felt, and continue to feel, for the countless Golden Retrievers that have graced our lives,” the GRE’s website explains. “It is this love that we want to share with the world, especially those who aren’t fortunate enough to own a dog themselves, by inviting people to join our incredible pack of goldies for some much-needed doggy cuddles.”

The fluffy getaway even welcomes dog-friendly pups to visit with their owners, making the whole experience a family affair. Accommodations for guests with disabilities are also available, ensuring the park is open to any and all dog lovers. If you find yourself desperately missing some canine companionship, there may be no better place than this slobbery safe haven.

Move Over Air Bud, Dog Jumps Into High School Track Meet and Wins

Dog Wins Track Meet
(YouTube/KSL News)

Air Bud flew so this track bud could run. A high school track meet got escalated to the next level when a dog ran onto the track and joined in a 4×200 meter relay. It happened during a high school track meet in Utah and in the final leg of the race, a dog comes out of nowhere to enter the fray.

And this dog doesn’t just run around aimlessly. This dog starts to BOOK. He soars down the track, catches the leader, and in a photo finish, beats out high schooler Gracie Laney to earn the major victory for canines everywhere. Just an incredible flex by this dog.

The dog even wins over the crowd, which begins to go crazy as she gains steam towards the end. Laney said she couldn’t believe she lost to a dog and started to run faster because she thought the dog was the runner behind her. Nope, instead, it was just Holly, the Goldendoodle who had gotten away from her owners so she could show the world what she was capable of.

“I honestly am just glad that we didn’t get hurt,” the human who *technically* won the race said. “It’s a fun experience.”

If this proves anything, it’s that high school sports are WAY more fun to watch when a dog is allowed to compete.

Parrot and Puppy Go Viral on Tik Tok Because Animal Friendships Rule

Parrot and Puppy Friends

Sometimes you’re having the type of day where you just need to see animals doing stuff.  Whether it’s dogs delivering beers, or a special needs puppy finding a forever home,  or just the classic “Dad who didn’t want a pet falls in love with new pet” routine, pet content gets a lot of people through a lot of days.

And if Tik Tok is good for anything, it’s an extremely efficient delivery system for this feel-good content. To make things the internet will enjoy, a good starting formula is “anything, + a puppy.”  In this case, its’ a runaway hit, as the viral video of a parrot meeting a puppy and saying “I love you” has had nearly 40 million views on Tik Tok.

Idaho pet owner Wendy Albright made a Tik Tok for her parrot Sweet Pea and quickly found some traction. But it wasn’t until Sweet Pea met Albright’s black lab puppy (see?) that things really took off.

@theparrotlady🥺 SP Meets Puppy #puppy #puppytiktok #fyp #lab #cute #cockatoo #parrot #baby #love♬ original sound – The Parrot Lady

Tens of millions of views later, she’s continued to churn out that sweet animal friendship content. There’s the parrot and puppy together after it gets a name (Copper).

@theparrotladyReply to @ne0nskyy This brought everything into a name for me! Thank you! 💕💕 ##puppy ##parrot ##baby ##love ##fyp ##foryou ##foryoupage ##lab ##puppies♬ original sound – The Parrot Lady


We even get more of the original hit, with more “I love you”s.

@theparrotladySuch pure love ❤️❤️❤️ ##puppy ##parrot ##baby ##lab ##fyp ##dogsoftiktok ##puppytiktok ##cockatoo ##cute ##truelove ##foryoupage♬ original sound – The Parrot Lady

Let’s face it; before this is all over, Sweet Pea and Copper should probably have a buddy-sitcom on Disney+. And your kids are going to watch it. Every. Single. Day. But that’s OK, because cute animals never disappoint.

Albright told a local news station why she thinks the pet duo became a social media sensation. “In this time we live in, people saw that video and just loved the unadulterated love of two animals just caring about each other,” she said.

Firefighters Rescue Dog Stuck in Couch Without Harming the Couch

Firefighters rescue a dog from under a retractable couch

How many firefighters does it take to get a puppy out of a couch? That’s not the setup to a dad joke, it’s the real-life question one department in Canada got to ask itself after responding to a call for a dog trapped in a reclining couch.

Being a pet parent can be stressful and sometimes scary. Cats are crazy, and will randomly climb trees and get stuck up there for no good reason. Dogs, much chiller, will go so deep into a couch they literally can’t get out. As a Dad I’ve also been there, but I’ve never had to call emergency services because of it.

As the Kamloops Fire Department found out, it takes five firefighters, and a few hours of work to get a small dog out of the couch. The department shared the story on Facebook.

“We don’t rescue cats out of trees anymore…but we do occasionally rescue dogs out of reclining couches!”

“We are happy to report that Bean, her owners, and the couch are all doing just fine today.”

See, that’s why they are heroes, not only did they save the dog, but they also managed to save the couch in the process. Lesser men would’ve broken the couch to save the dog. True heroes realize you don’t need to choose.

The owner said they were really thankful for the firefighters in their community and that they were able to work so calmly to free their beloved pet. This could also be a good testament to why you shouldn’t let your dog on the couch, but let’s be honest, most pups are going wherever they want.

Hero Pit Bull Awarded For Saving Owner’s Life

Astro The Hero Dog
(El Paso Times)

The phrase “man’s best friend” isn’t one taken lightly by dogs. They prove it time and time again; whether it’s comforting their owners in their final moments or delivering beer, dogs go above and beyond all the time.

The latest dog to earn critical acclaim is a pit bull from Texas, Astro. Astro noticed his owner was suffering a medical emergency and ran to alert a good Samaritan, who followed the dog back to his owner and was able to call 911. Crews were able to transport the owner to the hospital and save his life.


In a special ceremony, the El Paso Fire Department gave Astro an official award, a special doggie cake, and  remarked about how he wanted to force his way into the ambulance to stay with his owner (they eventually removed him). They also incorrectly named him “Cosmo” in their celebratory tweet, but that’s okay because dogs can’t read.

His owners said they were shocked Astro was able to do such heroic feat because he was not trained for this sort of support. The family had adopted him only one year ago after seeing frequently seeing him wander around as a stray. They say he’s not going anywhere, as they plan to shower their good boy with love and treats for his heroic acts.

Dogs rule, and some of them, like Astro, even have the official paperwork to prove it. Let’s face it, if Astro was a cat, he probably would’ve waited for his owner to become incapacitated so he could raid the pantry and drag his wallet into the toilet. He wouldn’t have gotten help, he would’ve plunked the phone in the toilet.

Fortunately, Astro is not a cat (or a hamster or a fish or any other unhelpful animal). He is a dog, and according to the Fire Department, the ‘goodest boy of all.’

Bindi Irwin Is ‘Devastated’ Her Daughter Won’t Get To Meet Her Dad

Bindi Irwin Baby

Becoming a parent changes your relationship with your own parents in a seismic way. There’s a different level of understanding, and you also get to see your child bond with their grandparent. Bindi Irwin opened up about how hard it is for her to become a parent and not get to experience that life change with her own dad around.

In the new Discovery+ special “Crikey! It’s a baby”, Irwin talks about how her newborn daughter Grace won’t get to meet her dad, the late conservationist icon Steve Irwin.

“It’s hard knowing she’ll never get to actually meet him,” she said in the special. “It’s devastating because I’ll never get to watch that connection.” She also said she can’t wait to tell her daughter all ‘these stories about Dad and to share with her what an amazing father he was.”


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A post shared by Animal Planet (@animalplanet)

It’s tough because becoming a parent makes you think about your own parents, and for Irwin, it’s her famous father and the Dad-sized hole his absence has left in her life. But his legacy is continued through the work of his kids, and it’s through their efforts that his granddaughter will get to know who her grandfather really was.

“It is really hard,” Irwin said. “It’s hard that he’s not here because out of everyone in the world he would’ve loved her the most. He would’ve loved her so much.” She also said his heart and soul live on in them, so he’s never really gone.


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A post shared by Bindi Irwin (@bindisueirwin)

The Irwin family has been vocal about how much they’re missing Steve during this time as the family expands, and how it makes absence even more pronounced than it was before. But it’s also seemed to harden their resolve to carry on his work and his legacy, especially to share it with the next generation of Irwins and animal warriors.