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Feb. 22, 2016: We've scoured the Web to find the best and most compelling animal stories, videos and photos. And it's all right here.
A 13-year-old boy was kayaking with his father and dog in icy water in Westchester County, New York, Saturday afternoon when the dog jumped into the water. The boy jumped out to help the dog and they swam to a small island on the pond — where they became stranded. The Croton-on-Hudson Fire Department attempted to get to the pair with a helicopter, but when that failed because of surrounding brush, they used a 12-foot inflatable boat. They loaded the boy and his dog into the boat and brought them back to shore, where they were reunited with the boy’s dad. Luckily, everyone was fine. — Read it at New York’s LoHud
Lima, Peru, resident Lorena Castro spotted a 1-month-old stray kitten helpless on a busy highway earlier this month. "I was about to get out of the car to pick her up when the motorcycle cop passed by," Castro told Peruvian newspaper El Comercio. "[He said,] 'Stay in the car. I'll take care of it.'" The officer stopped a bus just in time and picked up the stray kitten, then stopped two lanes of traffic to walk over and hand the kitten to Castro, who caught the rescue on video. She gave the kitten a home, and named her Polly Tana after the city bus line she was apparently spotted on. — Watch it at The Dodo
A Gastonia, North Carolina, resident was able to escape a fire in his home thanks to his dog. Firefighters said the home didn’t have a working smoke alarm, but luckily the resident was awakened by his dog just before 1 a.m. Sunday. They both escaped unharmed and firefighters extinguished a blaze in the kitchen. Gastonia Fire said the fire was caused by an electrical malfunction in the home’s heating system and caused $10,000 in damage. — Read it at North Carolina WCNC
It’s a match made in heaven. Two-year-old male polar bears Nobby and Nissan were introduced for the first time on Friday at England’s Yorkshire Wildlife Park. But from the looks of a video of their encounter, you’d think they’d been best friends forever. In the sweet video, the bears playfully rub noses and swim together. Nobby made a 2-day, 1,000 mile journey to the U.K. zoo from the Munich Zoo in Germany. "Nissan was a bit muddy from playing out but he was keen to break off the fun to see what all the fuss was about when Nobby arrived," the park's animal manager Simon Marsh told the Doncaster Free Press. “They clearly got along from the start." — Watch it at the Huffington Post
Keepers at Seattle’s Woodland Park Zoo are asking for your ideas to name the critically endangered baby gorilla they’ve been raising by hand. The Western Lowland gorilla was born on November 20 to first-time mom Nadiri, who didn’t show strong maternal skills. Keepers and veterinary staff have been caring for the baby girl in a den next to Nadiri’s 24/7 ever since. Multiple times a day, the baby spends time in Nadiri’s den with her. “She’s developing normally; introductions are progressing slowly but steady,” said Martin Ramirez, the zoo’s mammal curator. The winner of the naming contest will get to meet the baby in person. To enter, participants must choose a female name from the African languages of Hausa, Yoruba or Igbo. Entries can be submitted online at www.zoo.org/babygorilla by February 29. — Read it and see photos at Zooborns
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