Pet Scoop: Fishermen Rescue Kittens From River, Officer Squeezes Into Drain to Save Lab

Sept. 1, 2015: We've scoured the Web to find the best and most compelling animal stories, videos and photos. And it's all right here.

Two men who were out fishing saved a pair of kittens from an Alabama river Saturday.
Two men who were out fishing saved a pair of kittens from an Alabama river Saturday.

Kittens Swim for Help

Jason Frost and Brandon Key saw something swimming toward their boat from the shore on the Warrior River in Alabama while they were out fishing Saturday. They were shocked when they discovered it was a kitten. Frost pulled the scared cat into the boat while Key took a video of the incident. Seconds later, they heard a second splash and saw another kitten swimming toward them. They pulled that one, who looked just like the first kitten, into the boat, too. "Never in my life have I seen anything like that," Frost says in the video. He said he thinks someone may have abandoned the pair by the river. They brought the kittens to shore, where they gave them to a family with two young girls. Frost shared the video on Facebook Saturday and has been stunned by how far and wide it has spread. People from around the world have posted thank you messages on his Facebook page. — Read it and watch it at UPI

Study: Match Your Tone of Voice to Your Dog’s Personality

New research from the Duke University Canine Condition Center finds that if your dog is excitable, it’s beneficial to make your commands in a calm monotone voice. And, if your dog is laid-back, it might help make your commands with more urgency in your voice. Researchers tested 76 service dogs in training at Canine Companions for Independence, as well as 30 volunteer pet dogs in North Carolina who were a wide range of breeds and ages. They examined the combination of temperament and command voice with the dog’s ability to ignore his own inclinations and focus on a goal. For example, Charlie, a 2-year-old Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, had no trouble finding a treat behind a plastic barrier when the researcher used a calm voice. But when the researcher used an excited voice and waved the treat around, it took Charlie 21 seconds to find the treat. The study was published in the journal Animal Cognition. — Read it at North Carolina’s News and Observer

Almost All Seabirds May Ingest Plastic by 2050

There is so much plastic polluting the world’s oceans that most seabirds have already eaten it. Now, scientists predict that 99 percent of seabirds like albatrosses, penguins and gulls will have consumed plastic by the year 2050. If they eat too much plastic, the birds can become sick and die. "We predict, using historical observations, that 90 percent of individual seabirds have eaten plastic,” said Chris Wilcox, senior research scientist at Australia's Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization. “This is a huge amount and really points to the ubiquity of plastic pollution." The study was published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. — Read it from Agence France Presse via Yahoo

Buddy the Lab was rescued from a storm drain by Longview, Texas, Police Officer Kevin Nichols.
Buddy the Lab was rescued from a storm drain by Longview, Texas, Police Officer Kevin Nichols.

Officer Crawls Into Drain for Dog

A police officer in Longview, Texas, went out of his way to help a Labrador Retriever who fell into a storm drain Saturday morning and became trapped. Officers Kevin Nichols climbed down through a manhole into the storm drain and crawled through an 18-inch storm pipe for about 300 feet, from one manhole to another, to rescue Buddy. "Officer Nichols went above and beyond his duties," LPD said in a statement posted on Facebook with more photos from the rescue. "Way to go Officer Nichols." Drenched from the water in the drain, Nichols posed for pictures with a happy-looking Buddy after they were both safely above ground. — Read it at Texas’ KLTV

Miss Babe Ruth Retires From Fetching Bats

The bat-dog for North Carolina’s Greensboro Grasshoppers, a minor league baseball team, is retiring after working at 649 consecutive games. Miss Babe Ruth, a black Labrador Retriever, started her job when she was just 9 months old in August 2006. She’s retrieved an estimated 4,600 bats and 3,500 balls for players and umpires at every home game since then. Babe’s brother, Master Yogi Berra, and her niece, Miss Lou Gehrig, will continue to work with the team and carry on her legacy. — Read it at Click 2 Houston


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