A video of the adoptive father was posted by the staff of Mountfitchet Castle. Staff citied, “Fred the resident dog at the Castle stepped up to the challenge when nine little ducklings became orphaned.” It has been over a month since the ducklings were found “wandering” on the ancient castle grounds. However, like a duck to water, Fred leapt into action and has been looking after the ducklings ever since. The video of the Golden Labrador has received more than 67,000 views as of June 2018; drawing attention to the centuries old castle in the process.
While there are several species of animals on the grounds, Fred is the only resident dog. Other animals, such as the hens, are rescues from battery farms; while others, such as the deer, have been injured on the road. A few animals were once pets that became too big. In the case of the nine ducklings, they were orphaned by their mother.
The castle dates as far as back as 1066, with some artifacts suggesting that it is older. An attack on the castle in 1215 resulted in the it being forgotten for some 700-plus years. However, an authentic reconstruction of the site began in 1975 by the current owner Alan Goldsmith; and today the castle as well as the surrounding village, serve as a living history museum where animals such as sheep, peacocks, geese, and pygmy goats roam freely. Daily visitors to Mountfitchet Castle and Norman Village of 1066 are able to have a “hands-on” experience with the animals.
In the month since the orphaned ducklings were discovered, another 18 ducklings have hatched. Fortunately for Fred, this mother has stayed close to her ducklings. As for Fred, he still has paws full. Fred has kept a close eye on his ducklings, and according to a report by the BBC, the fine feathered animals sleep in the dog’s basket.
In addition to Fred the Labrador, the ducklings have made friends with other animals on the castle grounds. Appearing in photos posted by the staff, the ducklings have been spotted with the goats, as well as wandering solo. The Mountfitchet Castle is a renowned attraction of Essex, and has been recognized by the English tourist board, the London tourist board, as well as by the Good Britain Guide. Guests, like the ducklings, are able to roam the ground and explore the houses, and scenes of a time long ago. The 10 acres that the castle sits upon are unlike anything else in the world.