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August 30, 2013: We've scoured the Web to find the best and most compelling animal stories, videos and photos. And it's all right here.
Kittens Rescued From Rails
Two curious kittens shut down service to New York’s B and Q subway lines in Brooklyn for two hours in the middle of the day on Thursday while Metropolitan Transit Authority workers tried to rescue them. The 4-week-old pair was so quick that they managed to elude capture, and eventually service resumed with caution. Later in the day they were spotted again, and express train service was suspended while two police officers chased the fugitives. The kittens were finally caught at about 6 p.m. They were named Arthur and August, and were taken to the Brooklyn Animal Care Shelter for a medical evaluation. “I’d say it’s a relief, relief and joy,” said transit officer Jason Bolger, who was one of the rescuers. — Read it from the New York Daily News
A new study from the University of Maryland of the endangered birds’ migration habits finds that older whooping cranes play an important role in showing the young ones where to go. Their findings support the theory that at least some of the cranes’ migratory behavior comes from experience rather than all of it being something that’s encoded in their genes. "If younger birds fly with older birds, they do better," said Thomas Mueller, the lead author of the study. "And it matters how old that older bird is." The study was published in the journal Science. — Read it at NBC News
Researchers have found that young chimpanzees can have the same rare heart condition that has been found in the sudden deaths of young athletes. Arrhythmogenic right ventricular cardiomyopathy can cause irregular heart rhythms and sudden cardiac arrest during physical activity in people who are otherwise healthy. It’s characterized by fatty and fibrous scar tissue on part of the heart. The study involved autopsies on two chimps who were half-brothers and died suddenly during their teenage years at a zoo in the U.K. Mary Sheppard, who helped perform both autopsies and was one of the study’s authors, said she saw heart lesions in the chimps that were nearly identical to the ARVC abnormalities that put humans at risk. "The circumstances of these two cases in chimpanzees mirror the common presentation of the condition in humans,” said study author Lydia Tong, of the University of Sydney in Australia. The findings were published in the journal Veterinary Pathology. — Read it at Live Science
Pup Found After 65 Days in Desert
There was a joyous reunion in Phoenix after 1-year-old Ily, whose name is made up of the first letters in the words I Love You, was found in the Arizona desert following a two-month search. Ily had disappeared after being involved in a serious car accident in late June, where both she and her owner, Rose Sharman, were thrown from the vehicle. A group of volunteers refused to give up searching for the dog, and last week they finally heard about a sighting of two dogs traveling together three miles from the crash scene. They baited a cage and listened on a baby monitor — and it worked. Ily was rescued on Monday, along with another dog who she’d befriended in the desert. She was dehydrated and was down to 30 pounds from 55. But she was otherwise in good shape and happy to be back with Sharman, who’s still recovering from injuries from the accident. “She jumped on my lap and wagged her tail and started crying,” Sharman said of the reunion. The owner of the other dog, nicknamed Buddy, will be reunited with him on Friday. — Read it at Arizona’s ABC 15
Star, a 7-year-old Jack Russell Terrier in the U.K., is recovering from surgery after veterinarians discovered she had a belly full of stones and pebbles from her owner’s garden. “On close examination, we could feel something in Star's stomach but when we saw the X-Rays we couldn't believe how many stones she had swallowed,” said PDSA veterinarian Jennifer Jackson. Earlier this month, we told you about a similar case in Minnesota, where a Golden Retriever swallowed 16 rocks. Star is now doing well, and her owner, Tracy McCaul, has removed all of the stones and rocks from her backyard garden. — Read it at Yahoo News
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