Friday, April 29, 2016

Animals Are Smarter Than Humans Give Them Credit For

Is your dog smarter than your friend’s baby? Are cats smarter than dogs? What about Inky the octopus, who recently made a daring escape from his tank in a New Zealand aquarium — is he smarter than those internet cats whose owners “trapped” them in circles made of tape?

Thursday, April 28, 2016

German Shepherd Helps Rescue Children From Burning Home

Authorities in central Florida say a German shepherd helped firefighters locate the two young children of his owners in heavy smoke as a blaze destroyed their home.  The Seminole County Sheriff’s Office says that the dog named Maxx helped firefighters find the 4-year-old boy and 2-year-old girl Monday night in their home in the Orlando suburb, Longwood.

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Tiny Ocean Animals Get "Drunk" on Algae, Act Crazy

Even tiny ocean animals get soused—and not just in seawater.  A common species of plankton in the northern Atlantic Ocean becomes intoxicated when it slurps up toxic algae, a new study says. And just like drunk partygoers, "drunk" plankton take questionable risks. (Related: "Do Animals Get Drunk?").  In contrast to the wobbly gait of inebriated people, plankton under the influence swim faster and on a straighter path, making them more susceptible to predators. 

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Blind Elephant Just Can't Accept That Her Best Friend Is Gone

A blind elephant named Jokia is still mourning the loss of Mae Perm, her close companion of 17 years who died earlier this month at Thailand's Elephant Nature Park (ENP), a sanctuary and rescue for elephants.  When Mae Perm first passed away, Jokia spent six hours standing over her friend's lifeless body, "touching and nudging and leaning against" her, Lek Chailert, the founder of ENP, wrote at the time.

Monday, April 25, 2016

These Animals Live in the Most Powerful City in the World

Walking along the trail on this April day, wildflowers and blossoms dot the ground: bluebells, violets, spring beauties, trout lilies, jack-in-the-pulpit, mayapples, and bloodroot. Redbuds and cherry trees flower along the park’s roadways as bicyclists power up its steep hills.  It may be surprising, but this leafy wilderness is just miles from the White House, in the bustling, traffic-laden city of Washington, D.C.

Friday, April 22, 2016

Rescue Dogs Hug When Asked “Who’s Your Best Friend?”

Border Collie Lottie and her German shepherd brother Grizzly were both adopted and have learned mant tricks, but one thing they have taught themselves is to give each other hugs.  Taylor Duguay of Sudbury, Ontario adopted Lottie when she was four months old.  A year later, she adopted seven-week-old Grizzly.   From the very beginning, the two dogs developed a very close bond.

Thursday, April 21, 2016

How to Save a Billion Animals

Small changes by businesses and consumers can make a big difference in saving the lives of animals worldwide, said Wayne Pacelle, chief executive of the Humane Society of the United States.  "If we just reduce our meat consumption by 15 percent, we'd save a billion animals," he told CNBC's "Squawk Box" on Wednesday.

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Watch the Ultimate Animal Cuddlefest

What's cuter than cute?  How about meta-cute? That's pretty much the only way we can describe this wrecking ball of cuteness watching cuteness be cuddled by cuteness.  Confused? Let's break it down.

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

How Animals Think

For 2,000 years there was an intuitive, elegant, compelling picture of how the world worked. It was called “the ladder of nature.” In the canonical version, God was at the top, followed by angels, who were followed by humans. Then came the animals, starting with noble wild beasts and descending to domestic animals and insects. Human animals followed the scheme, too. Women ranked lower than men, and children were beneath them. The ladder of nature was a scientific picture, but it was also a moral and political one. It was only natural that creatures higher up would have dominion over those lower down.

Monday, April 18, 2016

Like Us, Animals Suffer

Re “What I Learned Tickling Apes” (Sunday Review, April 10):  As Frans de Waal beautifully describes, what looks like intelligence in animals is intelligence.  The other critical similarity between species is suffering. The misery animals endure at the hands of human animals is nearly unimaginable; “experts” since Descartes have tried to persuade us that the behaviors of suffering animals — seen in pain, depression, loneliness and heartbreak — represent anything but the feelings we ourselves feel.