DURBACH, Germany, Dec. 14 (UPI) -- A German Christmas tree farmer said her dog befriended a fawn in the woods more than a year ago and the pair have since become the best of friends.
Helga Kuderer, 52, who runs the 200-year-old Ritterhof Durbach farm in Germany with her husband, Andreas, said she and her dog, Carla, encountered the lone fawn in the Black Forest about a year and a half ago.
"Carla immediately took up a mother role, when she found the abandoned baby stag during a hike through the forest," Kuderer told NBC News.
The Kuderers adopted the deer, who they dubbed Peterle, and bottle-fed him goat's milk for nearly six months, until he returned to the woods on his own.
Kuderer said Peterle lives on his own in the woods, but he makes regular visits to play with Carla and share meals with the canine.
Peterle und Carla genießen ihr morgendliches Frühstück auf dem Ritterhof!Posted by Ritterhof Durbach on Monday, November 2, 2015
"Every day, Peterle visits Carla, they play around, cuddle and then eat some oatmeal and dog cookies together," Helga Kuderer said.
She said Peterle, who has been spotted socializing with other deer, was outfitted with a bright orange collar to prevent him from being targeted by hunters.