Pet Scoop: Nursery Dog Cuddles With Tiger Cubs, Dog Face-Plants in Crufts Agility Run

March 14, 2017: We've scoured the Web to find the best and most compelling animal stories, videos and photos. And it's all right here.

Nursery dog Blakely is helping to socialize three rare tiger cubs at the Cincinnati Zoo.
Nursery dog Blakely is helping to socialize three rare tiger cubs at the Cincinnati Zoo.

Dog Nanny Helps Rare Baby Tigers

The Cincinnati Zoo has called in its “6-year-old super-dog,” Blakely the Australian Shepherd, to help take care of its 5-week-old Malayan tiger cubs. The cubs, named Chira (because she was treated by a chiropractor), Batari (which means goddess) and Izzy (which means promised by God), are being hand-reared after they were ignored by their mom. The cubs love to climb on and cuddle with Blakely, but he has a more important role, too. “He’s more than just a large, warm pillow for the cubs. Blakely is the adult in the room. He teaches them proper tiger etiquette by checking them when they’re getting too rough or aggressive,” said Dawn Strasser, head of the zoo’s nursery staff. “This is something that their human surrogates can’t do.” The canine nanny has worked with lots of babies at the zoo, including cheetahs, ocelots and wallabies. They’ll spend the next few weeks together — until the tigers outgrow Blakely. — Read it and watch it from the Cincinnati Zoo

Loyal Dog Helps Lead Rescuers to Missing Owner

Rescuers found a 56-year-old woman and her Australian Shepherd, Camaro, nearly two days after they set off on a hike in San Mateo County, California. Bethnee Haury, who has diabetes and early-onset dementia, was vacationing with Haury’s husband and son when she and her dog left for a hike on Friday afternoon. Her concerned husband called the sheriff’s office at about 7:30 Friday night when she hadn’t returned. More than 70 searchers scoured the area that night, and started again on Saturday morning. “When we called out for her, we heard her yell back and then a couple seconds later, we heard the dog bark very clearly so Camaro did his job,” volunteer searcher Mike McKimmie said. “He's a big hero,” Bethnee’s husband, Ed, said. “He stayed with her the whole time. She had him on the leash. He's just very loyal. He senses trouble and stuff like that, so that was good.” Bethnee was airlifted to a hospital for treatment and is expected to be OK. — Read it at NBC Bay Area

2 New “Clown” Frog Species Found

Scientist have discovered two new brightly patterned clown tree frog species in the Amazon. The clown frog group was thought to contain only two species, but in a new genetic analysis, the scientists identified two new species — and said there could be as many as nine distinct species of Amazonian clown frog species. “Our new study shows once again that we are not even close to knowing the actual species diversity of South American frogs and that even supposedly widespread species may be endangered,” said lead author Marcel Caminer of the Pontifical Catholic University of Ecuador. The findings were published in the journal PLOS ONE. — Read it at Live Science

Ouch! Olly's face-plant at Crufts may look painful, but it didn't slow him down at all.
Ouch! Olly's face-plant at Crufts may look painful, but it didn't slow him down at all.

Terrier Wins Hearts With Face Plant

The biggest moment to come out of the U.K.’s Crufts dog show may have been a video of the hilarious agility run by a rescued Jack Russell Terrier named Olly. The little dog’s excitement and energy were contagious as he raced around the course at full speed — often in the wrong direction. And he didn’t quite make it over one of the obstacles, resulting in a face plant that clearly didn’t bother him at all. The announcer delighted in watching him, saying, “Olly is totally crazy, as you can see. He's having a ball.” — Watch it at Today

Patrick Stewart Fosters Rescue Pit Pull

Legendary Star Trek actor Sir Patrick Stewart has a new role: “foster father” to Ginger, a sweet Pit Bull who was rescued from breeding for a dog-fighting ring. For now, she’s moved to life in the lap of luxury in the British actor’s Hollywood home. Stewart, 76, Tweeted footage of the “beautiful, playful, handsome and happy dog” snoring while she napped on his chest. He says he’s acting as the “middle man” to help Ginger find a forever home, although he seems quite smitten with her himself, doting on her and attempting to give her swimming lessons in his pool. — Read it at the U.K.’s Express

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