Great-Horned Owl Gives Her Rescuer A Loving Hug

A Great-Horned owl saved from the brink of death has bonded with her rescuer in a way that’s amazing to see. GiGi was rescued by Wild at Heart Rescue after she was found with a traumatic head injury, likely from being hit by a car.

The Mississippi-based rescue brings in many distressed wild animals for medical care and rehabilitation including foxes, opossums, geese, raccoons, skunks, turtles and eagles among others.


Photo credit: Wild at Heart Rescue

Their president, Doug, has a truly special way with birds of prey. That becomes very clear from the way these birds respond to him.

Wild at Heart Rescue recently shared some photos of Doug with GiGi showing just how close their bond is and reveal what “an owl hug looks like”.

Doug has an amazingly calming effect on the birds he handles. When he came to check on GiGi she “was dancing all over when she saw him,” Wild at Heart Rescue wrote on Facebook. “I think this photo shows how much he was missed.”


Photo credit: Wild at Heart Rescue

They then shared a few more heart-melting pictures of the reunion. “There are pretty much no words to describe these two photos,” Wild at Heart wrote. “Doug was checking on his little patient, and this is what happened. She threw both wings around him and gave him an owl hug. Really Doug?!”


Photo credit: Wild at Heart Rescue

“The first photo he was saying shhhhh like he normally does~very calming to them.”


Photo credit: Wild at Heart Rescue

“Then I walk around to see what her face looks like and this is what I see. Pure contentment. They show their gratitude. Nothing these birds of prey do any more surprises me. I have learned to accept the fact that it’s just going to happen, and to have the camera ready at all times ~ These moments must be captured and frozen in time.”

It’s not the first time Doug has bonded with his feathered-rescues. “There are truly no words to describe what happens here between Doug and these birds of prey. It’s like they communicate. And I actually don’t think anybody in this world has a relationship with birds of prey like he does,” wrote the rescue.


Photo credit: Wild at Heart Rescue

Here’s another young owl, that goes to show just how much these birds appreciate Doug’s attention.


Photo credit: Wild at Heart Rescue

Once GiGi is well enough, she will be released back into the wild. To learn more about Wild at Heart Rescue and to support their efforts, visit their website and please share this story with your friends!