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Mike Lalicich and Buddy

Mike Lalicich and his German Shepherd, Buddy, met five years ago and have been best friends ever since. In July 2021, the pair officially became the City of Niagara Falls’ Covid-19 Recovery Ambassadors. In addition to their adventures on social media, they’re often seen engaging local businesses, helping to generate excitement and positive conversation in the local community.

How they met

How they met

Mike Lalicich and his German Shepherd, Buddy, met five years ago. Lalicich knew what he was looking for when he began an online search to find the perfect companion. He saw a picture of eight newborn Shepherd puppies from Woodstock, Ontario and decided to make the journey. At the time, Buddy was five weeks old when he and Mike were introduced. For the next three weeks, Mike travelled to Woodstock twice a week to visit his “little buddy” and by eight weeks, Buddy was on his way to his new home.

Buddy quickly adjusted to his new life and has brought comfort to Mike’s mother, Nellie Lalicich, who has Alzheimer’s disease.

An internet sensation

Mike and Buddy quickly became an internet sensation through their social media videos.

It began in 2017 when Mike started doing cake give-a-ways, allowing Buddy to select the winner. The local community instantly connected with Buddy. A friend and Niagara resident, Gary Gaston, suggested Mike create a social media account, initially posting photos.

Their first video, only their third post, went viral. Their videos are seen by millions of people globally.

An internet sensation
Their role as Covid-19 Recovery Ambassadors

Their role as Covid-19 Recovery Ambassadors

Mike Lalicich was born, raised and still lives in Niagara Falls.

He and Buddy were recently named ‘Niagara Falls’ COVID Recovery Ambassadors’ by Mayor of Niagara Falls, Jim Diodati.

In this role, Mike and Buddy highlight the beauty and unique areas surrounding Niagara Falls. They also spend time visiting and promoting local businesses as a way to help rebuild the local community following the pandemic.

“We want to get Niagara back on its feet again.” -Mike Lalicich

Mike and Buddy’s favourite spots to visit at Niagara Parks

You’ll often find Mike and Buddy exploring the trails throughout Niagara Parks, but Buddy particularly enjoys meeting new people while at the Glen.

Like most people, Buddy is fascinated by the sheer power and sound of Niagara Falls and spends many afternoons with Mike watching the water cascade over the brink.

Another pet-friendly spot are the trails that meander through Dufferin Islands. Here, Buddy enjoys seeing new faces and is always respectful of birds and other wildlife.

Mike and Buddy’s favourite spots to visit at Niagara Parks

Niagara Parks is committed to protecting the health and safety of all guests and staff. Face coverings are required at all indoor spaces and attractions within Niagara Parks, and proof of vaccination is required at some locations.