Guarding a castle in Essex is the main job of a 10-year old Labrador Retriever named Fred, but it’s not his only one. He also serves as Foster-Dad-In-Chief. When members of the castle staff found 9 orphaned ducklings roaming the grounds, Fred stepped in to be their guardian and protector. (It is presumed that the mom was taken by a fox or some other predator.) His fatherly instincts were strong and the ducklings took to him like ducks usually take to water. They snuggled around his legs while he lounged on the grass. They climbed onto his head and hung out there for a while. They rode on his back while he moved around the grounds—a slight tail wag visible.