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This TikTok Account Teaches Viewers How To Help Squirrels In Need

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There are so many delicious corners in TikTok – and one of the healthiest is TikTok Animal Rescue, where wildlife rehabilitators post their experiences caring for injured or sick wildlife. One account featuring some truly amazing work is Squirrel School, which has over 82,000 followers.

To learn more about the squirrel school, Green business recently caught up with the woman behind the magic, wildlife rehabilitator Beckie Lombardi, who cares for squirrels as part of her volunteer work with Boise, the Animals in Distress organization in Idaho.

The Squirrel School on TikTok shows how amazing wildlife rehabilitation is.

Source: Courtesy of Beckie Lombardi

On her TikTok Squirrel School account, Beckie Lombardi, 45, shares videos of the wild animals she rehabilitates, which are mostly squirrels, along with chipmunks, snakes, mice, badgers and ferrets. The Squirrel School videos feature the adorable critters feeding, grooming, and playing in and around Lombardi’s house.

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“These cozy little fur balls are so much fun. I love watching them play, explore and bounce as they grow from squirming babies to tiny toddlers, ”Lombardi said. Green business by email. “The best part is after a long game session when they come snuggle up to you for a nap. The squirrel fur is so soft and their tiny little snores are just heart-wrenching softness. A ride full of sleepy squirrels is the best feeling ever. “

A recent video tells the story of a squirrel mother named Pepper, unable to walk and therefore placed in the care of Lombardi. Lombardi was able to tell that Pepper had recently breastfed, so she introduced him to a newborn squirrel named Baby Bean, who needed breast milk – and the two immediately fell in love with each other. The video (below) shows Pepper nursing Baby Bean, and it’s the healthiest thing you’ll see today.

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The Squirrel School even has a few videos with hidden camera footage, presumably security cameras around Lombardi’s house, where you see squirrels climbing all over Lombardi as she tries to work, sneaking food from the kitchen and zoom around the living room. Things can get hectic – at one point last year Lombardi’s apartment was home to 28 squirrels at a time – but she loves it.

And not only are the videos adorable, entertaining, and funny, but they’re also heartwarming and inspiring because they’re all the product of someone who volunteers so much of their time and home to help wildlife in need.

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Once the squirrels are cured, Lombardi “gently releases” them back into the wild.

Nursing squirrel

Source: Courtesy of Beckie Lombardi

As Lombardi tells us, the baby squirrels in her care typically need around three to four months of formula feeding, during which time she enjoys “cuddling and loving them and raising them tiny pink mini gums. – fuzzy squirrels ”. Eventually, they switch to solid food and prepare to return to the wild.

“After their transition out of the formula, you need to prepare them for life outside in nature. We do this through a process called soft release, ”explains Lombardi. “The now adolescent squirrels are placed in a large outdoor enclosure where they are allowed to explore the area around them safely. Human interaction is reduced to almost zero so they can get used to being around other squirrels instead. After about a month, we open the door and allow them to come and go from the enclosure to the wild world as they wish. Finally they leave one day and that’s it! They take care of themselves.

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She adds, “Fortunately, squirrels tend to ‘run wild’ very easily, so there’s no worrying that the treats I make when they’re little will ruin them when they get older.”

Lombardi has looked after wild animals all his life.

Growing up in a rural area of ​​Boise, Lombardi has always been an animal lover. Her family has always had animals in the house and even helped care for the wild baby birds in her neighborhood as a child. After leaving town for college and a stint in the Navy, Lombardi moved to Los Angeles, where she worked for years as an assistant director, costume designer, prop maker and screenwriter – while continuing to do volunteering with animal organizations, as she had been doing for years.

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Lombardi booked a concert with the Syfy show Country Z, who found her alive in Spokane, Washington for two years. The town reminded her of Boise, so when the show ended, she returned to her hometown. Shortly after arriving, she found a baby mouse in need of care, so she contacted the Animals in Distress Association (AIDA). The organization’s leaders took Lombardi under their wing and she quickly became known as a local mouse savior.

After a few months, she decided to stay in Boise for good, where she now works full time in marketing and content creation for a startup. At this point, AIDA founder Toni Hicks (who recently died of cancer) began to attribute squirrels to Lombardi.

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In October 2020, Lombardi started sharing videos of her rescue squirrels on TikTok and was shocked to see her account quickly reach 1 million views and continue to grow over the past year.

“Who knew squirrels were so popular on social media? Lombardi said. “Regardless, if it allows me to share with the world how great squirrels are and how much more complex little animals they are than most people think, I’m happy!”

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