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August 18, 2015: We've scoured the Web to find the best and most compelling animal stories, videos and photos. And it's all right here.
It was a reunion against all odds. More than two years ago, Zeus’ family left the Rottweiler mix with friends when they had to move from Georgia to South Korea for a military assignment. While they were there, they got a devastating call saying that Zeus had died. But 2 ½ years later, they were shocked to get another call — this one from a North Carolina pet hospital telling them that Zeus was alive. He’d been found wandering around a neighborhood and was brought in by a Good Samaritan. Zeus’ family is now living in Washington state, but because he’d been diagnosed with heartworm, it wasn’t safe for him to fly. Luckily, Banfield pet hospital practice manager Rachel Overby heard about Zeus’ situation and offered to drive him across the country — nearly 3,000 miles — to his long-lost family. His epic journey ended Friday with a joyful family reunion. — Read it at North Carolina’s WCNC
For those of you on panda cub watch, we have an update from the National Zoo in Washington, D.C., on Mei Xiang. Monday marked 113 days since she was artificially inseminated, and zoo officials say she’s now either entering the final days of her pregnancy — or the final days of her false pregnancy. She’s sleeping most of the day, spending more time in her den, eating a lot less, licking a lot more and has become very sensitive to noise. All of those are signs of both pregnancy and pseudopregnancy in pandas, and they’re expected to continue for the next several weeks. The panda team has decided to close the panda house to the public to give Mei peace and quiet while they wait to see the outcome. — Watch Mei Xiang on the Panda Cam
A rhinoceros who was brutally attacked by poachers and lost one of her horns was rescued and is getting another chance at life — thanks to a skin graft from an elephant. "This is the first time we are using elephant skin to heal a wound on a rhinoceros," said Dr. Johan Marais, the veterinarian who performed the 1 ½-hour procedure to cover the wound in South Africa last week. It will take two to three weeks to determine whether the graft was successful. If it is, the technique could be used more often to save rhinos. — Read it from Agence France Presse via Discovery News
Talk about a rude awakening. A 4.0-magnitude earthquake rocked the San Francisco Bay area just before 7 a.m. Monday and was followed by several smaller aftershocks. There were no major injuries or damage reported, but residents took to social media to share their experiences. Ashley Guerin posted a video on YouTube of her two pups. They were sleeping peacefully but jumped up and looked around suspiciously after their home rattled. This was the first earthquake Gus and Gizmo have experienced, and the video of their reaction was picked up by the media and appeared in several broadcasts. — Watch it at ABC News
What do you get the Material Girl for her 57th birthday? From the looks of a photo she posted on Instagram, a puppy was the perfect gift. In the photo, Madonna is cuddling with a black and white puppy, with the caption, “Gypsy Rosa Lee… Best birthday present ever!” She celebrated the occasion at a gypsy-themed party Sunday with her children, where she was given the pup. — Read it at SFGate
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