After being washed into a marshland by a tide, the seal pup became stuck in the mud. Its future appeared grim until a herd of cows noticed it. 

Ian Ellis was searching for a little bird-watching in the Frampton Marsh Nature Reserve in Lincolnshire, U.K., but eventually, it was not the birds that caught his attention. 

Instead, he spotted the herd of cows clustered together in the mud, seemingly curious about something. 

As Ellis pointed his telescope to the group of nearly 30 cows, he saw they were looking at a little creature that seemed to be struggling “in distress,” as it was stuck in the mud. 

Ellis contacted the “Skegness Natureland Seal Sanctuary” after witnessing the desperate struggle of the poor creature, which turned out to be a seal pup.

“We were able to give advice about how to take the seal out of the situation, and Ellis was able to recover it with the help of wardens,” Seal Sanctuary director Duncan Yeadon told ABC News today. “They took her back here to the seal hospital, where she’s still recovering in at the moment.”

Officials suspected the seal pup was swept in by a tide from the North Sea. 

The rescue team assessed the pup; they said it was underweight, dehydrated, suffering from a lung infection, and had difficulty breathing. Had it not been for the group of cows and Ellis, it’s chance for survival was nearly zero. 

The veterinary staff detected that the pup was only 5 days old and must have been an orphan resulting in it being swept away from its homeland. It was then named Celebration in honor of the park’s 50th birthday. 

“She’s quite nice, very trusting and accepting of all the treatment we’re giving to her,” Seal Sanctuary director Duncan Yeadon told ABC News. “She’s not trying to bite our hands. She’s very docile.”

We know she wouldn’t have survived out there if she was just left there on the beach,” he said. “She’s now on antibiotics and anti-inflammatories and will hopefully be out of the hospital in the next week. Then it’ll usually take us about three months to put sufficient weight on her and teach her how to eat fish before we release her back into the wild again.” Yeadon added that Celebration would be rehabilitated and released back to the wild as it grew strong enough.