KITCHENER - A Kitchener woman found an injured pigeon on a bridge downtown. But instead of happening by, Lindsay Thompson decided to take it under her wing and care for it.
"It was really hunched down, looked like it was in pain," she recalls about the experience a month ago.
"I actually walked up to it and it allowed me to just pick it up and carry it back to the car."
She took the bird home to help nurse it back to health and even named it Pidge.
A veterinarian diagnosed the bird with mites and an injured wing, stopping it from flying.
Now it has to have small doses of antibiotics and opioids every 24 hours.
But Thompson wanted to know where the bird came from: the tags on the bird's feet mean it belonged to a pigeon racing group in Ontario.
"I contacted their directory, they gave me the phone number of the owner and I never heard anything back from them," she says.
The Pioneer Racing Pigeon Club says Pidge isn't one of tits birds, but says it's common for birds to get hurt or lost during a race.
Still, the club says owners should never abandon their birds.
"We frown really badly on that because that's not what we promote," explains Ryan Zonnekeyn with the club.
"Safety for the sport, for the animals. They have big hearts and you've got to respect that."
Thompson says she's grown to love that big heart.
"If I approach the cage, he kind of like bounces his wings a little bit," she explains.
"I've heard from people who know about pigeons that's a sign of, it's excited."
She plans on keeping Pidge and may even consider getting the bird a mate.
She has started a fundraising page to help cover medical costs.