Bites at Animal Planet

1 Jul

Wallaby Adopts Orphaned Kangaroo Right Into Her Pouch

Dodo Circular

(Guest post by Sarah V Schweig from thedodo.com)

For the first time ever, a baby tree kangaroo has found a home in a wallaby's pouch.

Makaia, a baby tree kangaroo, was only five weeks old when his mother was tragically killed by a falling tree branch.

Makaia, whose species is already endangered because of overhunting and loss of habitat, was having an especially rough start. Feeding the tiny tree kangaroo by hand was not an option — he was simply too young. Makaia needed a pouch to call his own and finish developing during his vulnerable early months.

YouTube/Zoos SA

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1 Jul

Summer Safety Tips for Your Pets: Fireworks, Sunburn and More

With the Fourth of July just a few days away, people across the country are preparing with patriotic decorations, food, and fireworks. However, this can be an especially stressful time for pet owners since the loud explosions from fireworks can cause distress in our furry friends. Couple that with extreme heat, a plethora of thunderstorms, and vacation travel, the ease of summer may not be so easy for our pets.

Sadly, dogs have been known to run away from home after being spooked by fireworks. To avoid this from happening, the best thing to do is be prepared. 

Many owners have tried getting their dogs used to the sounds of fireworks by playing sounds of fireworks in the background every so often, months before the Fourth. If you find yourself in a crunch for time, the best way to prepare is to keep your dog inside, and to have a safe space for them if they get spooked. This includes having a traveling crate nearby that the dog can hide in. Additionally, communicating with your pet is a great way to soothe them. 

You can also try playing white noise in the background the drown out some of the noise of fireworks or diverting your dogs attention through play, cuddling, and being a nearby support.

If you find it necessary, for those dogs whose stress levels are high, vets can prescribe you medication to sedate your dog during this stressful time. This should ultimately be a last-resort effort.

There are also several clothing options for your that will fit your dog tightly to make them feel safe and secure; these include ThunderShirt and Anxiety Wrap.

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1 Jul

Pets of Instagram: Meet Luhu, Quite Possibly the Saddest, Cutest Kitty Cat EVER

Meet Luhu, a pet to watch on Instagram. WHY, you ask? Well ... LOOK AT HIM:

 

#cat #cute #catofinstagram #ilovecat #mycat #mybaby #pet #angel #adorable #face #fat #funny #luhu 💕💕

A photo posted by Maggie Liu (@lanlan731) on Jun 29, 2015 at 8:01pm PDT

He's one of three tabbies living with owner Maggie Liu, in Beijing, China. And he is SO SAD. Sad to be in this costume, maybe?

Sad because his lips are chapped?

Or, maybe just feeling a little blue because he has food stuck in his teef?

Or, just sad ... just because?

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1 Jul

Snake vs. Snake (VIDEO)

If snakes creep you out, you probably shouldn't watch the video below. Or maybe you should. More on why, below the video. (Warning, the video features graphic predation!)

 

 

This video perfectly illustrates that if you're afraid of snakes, especially venomous ones, more snakes is the answer.

That's because many snake species, such as the cottonmouth (also known as a water moccasin--yes, they are the same species) in the video, happily feed on other snakes, including venomous ones like the rattlesnake.

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A California kingsnake, a species that happily feeds on rattlesnakes. Photo by National Park Service via Flickr.

Yes, cottonmouths are venomous too, but plenty of non-venomous snake species feed on their venomous cousins too. Most notable are probably the kingsnakes, named so because they actually regularly eat other snakes as a main part of their diet.

Unlike the seemingly clueless rattlesnake in the video, which slithered right up to the larger cottonmouth oblivious to its impending doom, sometimes the presence of snake-eating snakes is enough to drive other snakes away.

Adopt a Rattlesnake with the National Wildlife Federation 

1 Jul

UPDATE: Abused Pit Bull Caitlyn is Coming Back in a Big Way

A few weeks ago we wrote a blog about Caitlyn, a 15-month-old Pit Bull who was harshly abused when her muzzle was taped shut.

Today, with great delight, she is doing well and back in the news, only this time for a good cause. Her road to recovery has recently made a stop in modeling... with shirtless firefighters. 

Caitlyn-1

The Charleston Firefighters recently asked Caitlyn to model with them for their 2016 calendar. After what she has been through, Caitlyn needs major love and attention, and who better to get it from then the brave men who fight fires to keep us all safe?

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1 Jul

UPDATE: 'Kale Chips' the Beagle Is 20 Pounds Lighter, Healthier and Happier (VIDEO)

Remember our buddy, Kale Chips?  Rescued this past January, he was 85 pounds when he was brought to the shelter One Tail at a Time. That's about 60 pounds overweight by your average beagle body standards.

Kale-chips-beagle-1

Photo: Courtesy of One Tail at a Time. Visit the One Tail at a Time Facebook page for more photos >>

But thanks to the One Tail at a Time staff, he's dropped 20 pounds with a healthier diet and lots of exercise. When the rescue first took him in, they were a little daunted by the challenge at hand -- but, Kale Chips is a fighter! He took to his new lifestyle habits happily and charged ahead with his new beginning.

Kale-chips-1

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30 Jun

Illinois Could Allow Dogs to Comfort Courtroom Witnesses

Mitchell
Screengrab via the Daily Herald video.

A bill that would allow facility dogs to accompany witnesses 18 or younger to the stand in certain instances for cases involving abuse or exploitation has been approved by the Legislature, and sits on Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner's desk ready to sign, reports Illinois-based Daily Herald.

The bill would require that dogs be facility dogs with proper credentials. Unlike service or therapy dogs, facility dogs must meet national standards and come from an organization accredited by Assistant Dogs International.

Animals have been used periodically on a contract basis by prosecutors to comfort young crime victims during interviews, but it is believed the Lake County state's attorney's office is the only one in Illinois with a full time facility dog; his name is Mitchell and he is a two-year-old Labrador retriever donated by St. Louis-based Support Dogs Inc.

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30 Jun

Cat Cafes: The Feline Sensation That's Sweeping the Nation

Have you always wanted to go to a cat cafe? Have you always wondered what a cat cafe really is? Well, the time is now for both of those things as these feline-centric coffee shops are popping up all over the country. What is it exactly? Well, it’s just what it sounds like: a café where you can go and play with cats. Some call it crazy, some call it genius. The best part of the whole thing is that, in most cases, these cats are up for adoption and are getting a chance at a new home. This craze started in Japan and came over to the United States in 2013. Below is a list of a few of the cat cafes around the country. Don’t see a location near you? Check out Eater.com for a definitive list of existing and upcoming cat cafes! Make sure to pay attention to the rules of each café, as many have varying age restrictions.

Crumbs & Whiskers: Georgetown, Washington, D.C.

Cost: $10 per hour Monday-Friday, $12 per hour Saturday and Sunday

This is D.C.’s first cat café, which opened only a few weeks ago thanks to an ambitious cat lover and Kickstarter. All cats in the cafe are available for adoption through the Washington Humane Society. While the menu is small, coffee and desserts are provided by Georgetown Bites, a café across the street. On top of that, the shop offers a wide variety of cute t-shirts and cards, with all proceeds going to the upkeep of the cafe. 

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30 Jun

Woman Exposed to Flesh-Eating Bacteria During Mud Run Loses Sight in One Eye

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Participants in an unrelated mud run. Photo: Tjeerd Boolj/Flickr

A Texas woman is now blind in one eye after being exposed to a flesh-eating bacteria during a mud run, reports the New York Daily News. The bacterial infection, necrotizing fasciitis, spreads quickly and kills the body's soft tissue, according to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC).

According to a Go-Fund-Me page established for Brittany Williams, she suffered from pain and vision loss in her left eye after participating in a mud run with her fiancé. ER doctors originally believed she was experiencing what looked like a chemical burn, however, a few days later, her cornea rapidly deteriorated.

Williams is currently being treated with antibiotics, but is struggling under the cost of care since she does not have health insurance.

Learn more about necrotizing fasciitis in the Monsters Inside Me clip below:

30 Jun

Python Dies After Eating Porcupine

One massive African rock python bit off more than it could chew after falling victim to its last meal.

A few days after being photographed in South Africa’s Lake Eland Game Reserve, the python turned up dead. It turns out the prey it devoured was a porcupine, with quills that were lodged inside the snake’s digestive track, according to the game reserve’s Facebook page.

Screen Shot 2015-06-30 at 11.55.47 AM

Not quite the impala calf or warthog the game reserve initially thought.

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Welcome to the Bites @ Animal Planet, where you can connect with the people who bring Animal Planet to life. Find out what's in the works here at Animal Planet, share your feedback with the team and see what's getting our attention online and in the news.

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