Maine moose calf, separated from its mother, forms bond with family, dog

WALLAGRASS, Maine (WHDH) — It’s an unlikely furry friendship in Northern Maine.

A moose calf that became separated from its mother has formed a connection with a German Shepherd and his family.

“We were all really happy that she’d come into our lives,” said Abigail Pettengill, who helped care for the moose. “We all immediately fell in love with her.”

It was clear right away that the dog and the moose were fast friends.

“He wasn’t interested in hurting her,” said Shannon Lugdon. “Their noses touching and he was licking her bug bites, and then she started getting up and just following him around.”

Lugdon and her family found the calf wandering around their land, calling for her mother. The baby was in need of serious attention.

“By the time the warden got here, she had curled up in my lap,” she said.

Game wardens told the family to leave the moose alone for 24 hours, hoping her mother would come back.

“She stayed in that same general area all day,” Lugdon said. “And she’d wander up and down the brook and call for her mom, and then go back to the very same spot.”

The calf’s mother never returned, and she became attached to her new foster family who fed her.

“We got Lactaid milk and we’d feed her and basically she’d suck on our finger and we’d pour the milk in on the side,” said Pettengill.

The family also played with her and watched over her until game wardens could eventually relocate her.

They say they’ll always have a place for this little moose in their hearts.

“I think we all just fell in love,” Lugdon said. “The moose fell in love with the dog, the dog fell in love with the moose, we fell in love with her, and she fell in love with us.”

The moose, which was estimated to be about a week old, was eventually relocated to a wildlife reserve.

(Copyright (c) 2018 Sunbeam Television. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)