Lauren Russell captured the "unbelievable" moment her dog Wally befriended a woodchuck while swimming in Massachusetts' Hickory Hills Lake

By Vanessa Etienne
June 10, 2021 01:56 PM
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Woodchuck and dog

A golden retriever met an unlikely furry friend while taking a dip in a Massachusetts lake.

On May 16, Lauren Russell took her dog, Wally, out for a swim at Hickory Hills Lake in Lunenburg. During the pooch's dog paddling, Russell noticed a woodchuck approaching Wally and attempting to clamber onto the pup's back. She said she and her husband were shocked by the unexpected passenger and captured the moment on camera.

"He was about 100 meters out, and a woodchuck I think just crawled right up on his back, and he swam back to shore with him," said Russell, describing the moment to WCVB. "We were flabbergasted. It was unbelievable. We couldn't believe what we were seeing."

Russell told the outlet that Wally didn't mind the woodchuck using him as a boat. The dog did look back at the furry critter but continued to work his way through the water without disturbing the smaller animal. The owner added that she didn't know if the woodchuck hitched a ride because it was "in distress or just lazy."

The sweet moment didn't end there. Once the 2-year-old pup carried his new friend back to shore, they shared a "kiss" before parting ways.

"It came back to the island, hopped off his back, and then scurried away, and they gave each other a little kiss goodbye," said Russell. "They like touched snouts, and then he ran away."

Wally's good deed isn't an unsusual act for the golden retriever, according to his owner.

"He's just an angel. He loves all animals. He loves little kids, people, you know, it doesn't get better than Wally," she said.