My grand daughter's hand-raised, orphaned-homer failed to return on a 20 mile toss. It was one of the few times she did not accompany me on a release. She suffered tears and heartache when I told her of the loss. Amazingly when I went to close up the loft at dusk what should come flying in but (her pigeon) Piper! I checked him over and he was tore open from his neck to his tail feathers. My first instinct was to put him out of his misery. I however brought him into the house for a better look. My wife flushed out the wound with a saline solution and I glued him back together with crazy glue. He was good to go in about 5 days This is him incubating eggs after his ordeal. . My grand daughter was On The MOON when I told her of Pipers return. Grand daughter has experienced love, loss, heartache. first aid, joy, responsibility, and kinship with yours truly. She has also developed special bonds with some of our doves who prefer her company over mine when she comes into the loft with me. It has given her a good subject for presentation at school as well. We also are starting up a small enterprise with white dove releases (Pipers parents were both solid snow white just for the record). Pipers Parents Grand daughter did her first dove release at a wedding last fall also another release for an anti bulling campaign at her grade school. With the aid of the Internet she has also become somewhat of an authority on homing pigeons. She definitely knows more than the average 12 year old on the subject and can talk your ear off. This was relayed to me by her teacher after she was forced to cut off a presentation she made when the question period looked like it was not going to end. She would rather hang out with Hokum (her name for me since she was one) then any of her friends or parents (for that matter). Picture of Back Yard However she will be entering her teens next year (make-up and boys will probably soon shove me aside). I know however that these birds have made her a better person regardless what comes in the future. Plus I have another grand daughter who is only turned 3 and calls me Coco (since she was one).