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Sept. 24, 2013: We've scoured the Web to find the best and most compelling animal stories, videos and photos. And it's all right here.
Fourteen fuzzy black and white giant panda cubs were introduced to the public for the first time in an epic photo op at the Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding in China on Monday. The baby bears were all artificially bred at the facility and were born between July and September. About 80 percent of the world’s 1,000 endangered pandas live in China’s Sichuan province, which is where Chengdu is located. Monday was the first time the 14 cubs were in the same place at the same time. A total of 20 cubs were born at Chengdu this year, with 17 surviving. — Watch it and see more photos at Today
Roxi, a Lakeland Terrier who’s “a bit of a menace,” disappeared last Monday after she took off chasing a rabbit while out for a walk near her Scotland home. “It was a complete nightmare. We searched day and night for her. But we never gave up hope,” said owner Barry Mullins. On Wednesday, Mullins heard Roxi responding to his calls for her, and found her stuck 20 feet underground in a rabbit hole. Firefighters were called in to help in the delicate rescue. After four “very intense” hours of careful digging, Roxi was free. The pup suffered from a minor eye infection, but is otherwise recovering well. — Read it at Life With Dogs
Despite a high-profile international movement to save black and white rhinos, new figures from the South African government show that 688 of the animals have been killed this year — surpassing last year’s total with three months still left in 2013. There has been a dramatic increase in rhino poaching in South Africa in recent years. As recently as 2007, only 13 rhinos were killed. The animals are considered valuable for their horns, which are in demand in Asia. “It’s appalling to think how many may be lost to this illicit trade by the end of the year,” said the World Wildlife Fund’s Heather Sohl. “Governments need to act with pace and in a way that fits the seriousness of the crime.” — Read it from the U.K.’s Guardian
Last year, the birth of a female dolphin calf at Dolphin Quest Hawaii was captured in an amazing video that has been viewed more than 2 million times on YouTube. Last week, trainers and a group of lucky kids serenaded Lehua with a chorus of “Happy Birthday” and presented her with a special treat. Lehua was the first second-generation calf to be born at the facility — her mom was born there, too. “Lehua is an amazing ambassador, inspiring guests from all over the world to be passionate about dolphins and their ocean environment,” said Lauren Prutow-McKenna, a senior dolphin trainer at Dolphin Quest.
Cat behaviorist Jackson Galaxy, host of the popular Animal Planet show My Cat From Hell, appears in a new PSA from Alley Cat Allies. In the spot, Galaxy explains why Trap-Neuter-Release (TNR) is a humane and effective program for feral cats in time for next month’s National Feral Cat Day. “Feral cats live outdoors in colonies, and that’s where they belong,” Galaxy says in the video. “They’re not socialized to humans … but they need and they deserve our help just like any other cat.” Alley Cat Allies president Becky Robinson says that while 330 local governments have “embraced TNR, there is still much more work to be done to spread this positive change.” — Watch it on YouTube
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