One of the dogs taken from the Cleveland home of Ariel CastroThree dogs taken from the Cleveland home of Ariel Castro, the man charged with kidnapping and raping three women over a decade, will remain in foster care until the women decide if they want to adopt them.
The women may have bonded with the dogs during their captivity, and it's possible the animals could help the women as the acclimate to freedom, says John Baird, chief Cleveland animal control officer.
Also see: A gallery of history's 10 greatest escapes
"It kind of makes sense, maybe that there were three dogs, three women," he told The Associated Press. "They may have bonded with these dogs. and we would like for them to have a shot at them if they want them, just because it was something they could attach themselves to."
Dogs Unlimited Rescue will care for the dogs until Amanda Berry, Gina DeJesus and Michelle Knight make a decision.
The dogs include a Chihuahua and two terrier-poodle mixes. The rescue group said the animals had matted hair, but otherwise appeared to be in good
Blog Posts by Mother Nature Network (mnn.com)
- Mother Nature Network (mnn.com) | Author Blog Posts – 9 hours ago
One of the dogs taken from the Cleveland home of Ariel CastroThree dogs taken from the Cleveland home of Ariel Castro, the man charged with kidnapping and raping three women over a decade, will remain in foster care until the women decide if they want to adopt them.Read More »from Kidnapped Women Will Have Chance to Adopt Captor's Dogs
Bridget Evans and her 6-year-old chocolate LabradorCaps and gowns are a common sight this time of year, but attendees at a recent commencement were surprised when a dog in a cap and gown of its own walked alongside a graduate in a wheelchair.Read More »from Service Dog Wears Cap and Gown at Graduation
The 6-year-old chocolate Labrador escorted Bridget Evans at the convocation ceremony of the College of Applied Health Sciences at the University of Illinois, Urbana Champaign on May 11. They wore matching caps and gowns, and a photo that an attendee snapped of the pair went viral after it was posted on Reddit.
"The girl and the dog received the loudest applause hands down. Very adorable," the user wrote.
Also see: 5 lesser-known facts about service dogs
Evans later identified herself as the girl in the photo and shared her story. Born with spina bifida, a spinal birth defect that has required her to have 37 surgeries, Evans gets around in a wheelchair. But the 24-year-old's life is made a little easier with the help of her service dog, Hero.
Hero knows more than 40 commands and assists Evans
The tattoo on the dogA North Carolina man has sparked controversy among animal lovers after he tattooed his puppy's belly and posted a photo of the tattoo on Facebook.Read More »from Man Tattoos Puppy, Faces Backlash
Ernesto Rodriguez, an army veteran, says he tattooed his 4-month-old pit bull mix for identification purposes. Duchess the puppy and his other dog, Duke, have the same intricate tattoo.
"They both have it. They both have their tattoos on them just in case anything happens to them," Rodriguez told CNN.
Also see: Student dresses squirrel up in many hats
Critics say Rodriguez posted the photo to the Planet Ink Tattoo Facebook page to publicize the tattoo parlor he ran out of his basement, and they argue that his story about inking Duchess doesn't add up.
Rodriguez claims that he gave the dog the tattoo after taking her to the vet to have her ears clipped.
"I took her to the shop, tattooed her, and she slept the rest of the day," he said.
But animal advocate Caleb Scott, who serves on the North Carolina Voters
- Mother Nature Network (mnn.com) | Author Blog Posts – Mon, May 20, 2013 2:40 PM EDT
Baby cryingWhen you're anticipating a flight and know the seat next door will contain a stranger, certain worries come to mind: Will he or she be a messy sneezer? A rambunctious snorer? An over-exuberant chatter? But of all the scenarios we dread, perhaps none elicit the "oh-no" factor as much as a parent with a bawling baby.Read More »from Crying Babies Preferred to Smelly Adults on Flights, Says Survey
However, a new Harris Poll finds that a weeping tot isn't the worst offender on a plane; that honor belongs to the stinky seatmate. When presented with the statement, "I would rather be seated next to a crying baby than a smelly adult," 63 percent agreed, 23 percent disagreed, and 14 percent weren't sure.
Also see: The 10 greatest moments in flight
Who else do we hope doesn't get assigned to the seat next to us? The "fall asleep on your shoulder" stranger - in fact 55 percent of those polled said they'd rather have to pay for carry-on baggage than have an unknown person snooze nearby with physical contact. (On the other hand, that means that 39 percent would prefer such
- Mother Nature Network (mnn.com) | Author Blog Posts – Mon, May 20, 2013 10:17 AM EDT
Staff Sgt. Jesse Knott and his cat KoshkaStaff Sgt. Jesse Knott risked his life while serving in Afghanistan, but it's the risk he took for a cat named Koshka that's getting him attention these days.Read More »from U.S. Solider and Stray Cat Save Each Other in Afghanistan
Knott met Koshka on base in the Maiwand District of Afghanistan, where the feline worked as the unofficial mouse catcher. But despite his service, Koshka wasn't always taken care of.
"He was showing some signs that people weren't taking very good care of him," Knott told CBS affiliate WBTV. "I found paint in his fur a couple of times. And then people took clippers and shaved his back."
Also see: 10 weird ways animals have served the military
Concerned for the cat, Knott made room for Koshka in his office, even though soldiers aren't allowed to have pets.
Then, on Dec. 8, 2011, a suicide bomber targeted a military convoy near Knott's base and killed two of the soldier's friends. Knott said he was struck by depression and was crying in his office when Koshka came to comfort him.
"With tears in my eyes he locked eyes with me,
by Michael d'Estries, Mother Nature NetworkRead More »from Justin Bieber Will Lose His Monkey at Midnight
Justin Bieber and his pet monkeyJustin Bieber is frantically making a last-ditch effort to get back his beloved pet monkey from German custom officials.
We're just kidding -- he's not doing anything. In fact, it's as good as a done deal that in only afew hours, Mally the baby capuchin, will be living the sweet life at a zoo or animal shelter somewhere in Germany.
Also read: Gallery of celebrities' famous pets
"If no further documents arrive then the seizure order comes into effect and the animal becomes the property of the German state," customs spokesman Thomas Meister told The Associated Press.
A little over a month and a half ago, Mally was confiscated from the 19-year-old after he failed to produce the necessary documentation for her entry into Germany. Beyond some unconfirmed emails with what animal shelter officials believe was Bieber's manager Scooter Braun, very little concern for the capuchin's well being has been shown by the pop star and his
- Mother Nature Network (mnn.com) | Author Blog Posts – Fri, May 17, 2013 10:25 AM EDT
by Laura Moss, Mother Nature NetworkRead More »from A Cat Named 'Pretzel': Kitten's Recovery Inspires Facebook Fans
Pretzel, the little kitty that couldVeterinary technician Carmen Bernard was driving down a country road outside Jacksonville, Fla., when she spotted what she thought was an opossum in the road. She pulled over to help the critter, but discovered the animal was actually a 5-week-old Siamese kitten.
The kitten's hind legs were twisted and Bernard suspected the cat had been hit by a car, so she took the animal to the vet.
However, according to veterinarians, the kitten wasn't injured but had several severe deformities. X-rays revealed that the cat's right leg was backwards and her kneecap was on the back of her leg. As a result, her leg's muscles and tendons were also reversed, causing her bones to twist. Her left leg was deformed as well, although not as severely as her right.
Also see: Gallery of 7 of the most inspiring disabled pets
The irregularities made it difficult for the kitten to walk and caused her a significant amount of pain. In addition to her twisted legs, the kitten,
By Laura Moss, Mother Nature NetworkRead More »from Kitten with Birth Defect Defies the Odds
Corky, a 7-month-old kitten born with a rare birth defect, was scheduled to be euthanized in March, but a vet tech at the pound took a liking to the cat and called CATS Cradle, a Fargo, N.D., no-kill shelter.
"She refused to describe that cat over the phone," says shelter co-founder Gail Ventzke. "She just said 'you have to see this'." So Ventzke and co-founder Carol Stefonkek went to meet the mysterious little kitten.
"When we arrived, she brought this tangled little guy out of the cage area, and from that moment on he was ours," says Ventzke.
She and Stefonkek named the cat Corky and took him straight to North Dakota State University for X-rays. They learned that Corky had been born with a genetic deformity called bilateral arthrogryposis of tarsus, meaning his back legs were backwards and overlapping. The disease is common in cattle, but rare in cats.
Also read: 'Cat Island' is feline's perfect paradise
They contacted several vets, and all
By Laura Moss, Mother Nature NetworkRead More »from Is My Cat Depressed?
People aren't the only ones who get the blues - cats can suffer from depression too.
Behaviorists first recognized depression in cats in the 1990s, and felines can become depressed for several reasons.
A major disruption such as moving, adding or losing a family member or a change in schedule can trigger it. If a cat's owner is going through a stressful time, the animal could also mimic that unhappy behavior.
Also read: 11 ways to beat depression naturally
A depressed kitty can exhibit a variety of symptoms, but one of the main indicators of depression or other illness is loss of appetite. If your feline leaves food untouched - especially for more than a day - you should consult your veterinarian.
Additional signs of feline depression include the following:
• Loss of interest in playtime
• Lack of grooming
• Signs of lethargy or changes in personality
• Aggression •
By Laura Moss, Mother Nature Network
Terfel and Pwditat.
When 8-year-old Labrador mix Terfel started losing his eyesight, he was diagnosed with cataracts and began confining himself to his bed to avoid bumping into things.Read More »from Blind Dog Gets Seeing-Eye Cat
But then his owner, Judy Godfrey-Brown, let a stray cat into their North Wales home and something amazing happened.
The cat, named Pwditat, approached Terfel and seemed to sense that he couldn't see. Using her paws, she coaxed him out of his basket and led him out into the garden.
Also read: Recovery of cat named 'Pretzel' inspires Facebook fans
"Pwditat immediately seemed to know that Terfel is blind through some sort of sixth sense that animals have," said Anne Cragg, a friend who looked after the animals when Godfrey-Brown was in the hospital.
"They're fantastic friends. They really love each other. They are glued to each other and even sleep together now," she said.
Today, the unlikely pair is virtually inseparable and Pwditat serves as Terfel's