Meet a cute and curious beaver named Maple. She lives at 2nd Hand Ranch and Rescue, a home-based wildlife rehabilitation center and animal sanctuary run by founder Nancy Johnson and many volunteers. On their Facebook page, the sanctuary posts all kinds of sweet and funny creatures, but Maple caught my eye, and I found this video of her pilfering Ritz crackers from the cupboard adorably hilarious. I love how her human tries to stop the curious critter but Maple persists until she gets her treat. And those little grabby paws and little squeaks and grunts are just too cute.
And if you want literally the perfect animal-crunching ASMR, here's Maple munching on celery—turn up the volume, it's terrific!
Here's how the 2nd Hand Ranch website describes Maple:
This sweet gal joined us as an itty bitty baby, the size of a guinea pig. . . . She was found abandoned by an heavy equipment operator who saw her sitting on the ground. She was most likely left by her mom as she has had and still has health issues. But with good vet care and medications we are so happy she is still with us. We actually didn't think she would survive. And survive she has – she thrives at 2nd Hand Ranch. We will continue to watch her development and care for her one day at a time. Until then she brings us great joy (and a lot of work and funding) and gives us the opportunity to educate so many on her antics, her habits and her instincts!
2nd Hand Ranch and Rescue explains on their website that "all wildlife is given lots of TLC, and raised with the goal to release back into the wild where it is most happy." They further explain their mission:
We are also a Licensed Illinois Department of Agriculture companion animal rescue. We are foster based—dogs stay in foster homes until we can find a permanent home. Our niche are the hard luck cases, the older dogs that have found their way to 'death row' in animal controls and in open door (kill) shelters, dogs with medical conditions that need much TLC to mend . . .
Over the years we have grown from a few cages in the guest room to a beautiful wildlife rescue with our many out-buildings and enclosures. We now are a 501(c)(3) Charity and we have created a sanctuary for abused and senior animals of all kinds as well as a few rescued farm animal babies that are our ambassadors of compassion, teaching folks that all animals are a somebody not just a something.
You can also virtually "adopt" an animal—in addition to Maple, you can also sponsor Trinidad the Turkey, Albert the Ox, and Otto the Fox, among many others. And for more cute animal videos from their rescue, follow their Facebook.