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August 29, 2014: We've scoured the Web to find the best and most compelling animal stories, videos and photos. And it's all right here.
Hundreds of people gathered Thursday to honor Kye, an Oklahoma City police K9 who was killed in the line of duty. The 3-year-old German shepherd was fatally stabbed while helping his partner make an arrest Sunday. He had a funeral with full police honors, two uniformed officers standing by his flag-draped casket and a 21-gun salute. Kye’s partner, Staff Sgt. Ryan Stark, leaned over the casket to say goodbye with his tearful family, while dozens of police officers and their K9s from around the state filed by to salute the dog. "Without question, Kye’s sacrifice saved the life of one of the officers,” said Sgt. Coy Gilbert, in his eulogy. — Read it at Oklahoma’s KOCO
Healthcare workers have stressful jobs. Last year, while decompressing with her own dog at home, Heather Matthew, an emergency room nurse at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, came up with an idea to help her coworkers cope with stress. She worked with the Pennsylvania SPCA to bring puppies and kittens to the hospital so the staff could cuddle and play with them during their lunch hour. The employees love it — and it benefits the animals, too. “The pets that come, they’ve been abused, neglected,” said Jerry Buckley, president of the PSPCA. “I think the staff has a special affinity [for them.] … The patients they deal with are also the most vulnerable.” About 10 of the animals have found forever homes with employees who fell in love with them. — Watch it at ABC News
Bear experts at Washington State University’s bear center have found that some grizzly bears have the smarts to use primitive tools to get what they want. The researchers tied glazed doughnuts to strings, putting them just out of reach of the bears. Six out of eight bears pushed stumps or plastic boxes across their yard and climbed on them to reach the treats. One bear even tried to stack objects to get the doughnut. "Their timing in getting this down has been very quick," said veterinarian Lynne Nelson, who’s overseeing the study. "It has rivaled that of primates." The findings of the study haven’t yet been published. — Read it at Live Science
By calling the state’s Wildlife Alert Hotline, a concerned citizen helped save the lives of two endangered manatee lives in Clearwater, Florida. After getting the call, biologists from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Research Institute and staff from the Clearwater Marine Aquarium found the distressed female and removed a crab trap rope that entangled both her flippers. A calf only knows to stick by mom’s side, so if she’s in trouble, her baby is, too. Both of the manatees were rescued and transported to Tampa’s Lowry Park Zoo, where they will be rehabilitated. Once they’ve recovered, mom and calf will both be released back into the wild. — See more photos from MyFWC’s Facebook Page
Phoolkali, an elephant who was rescued from abusive owners, is now using her talent to help her endangered species. Artist Alpana Ahuja helped Phoolkali create brightly colored paintings with her giant footprints. She would lure Phoolkali with baskets of bananas, dab paint on her foot and have her press it against a big canvas. Her work is now on sale for $165 to $400 a piece at the ArtSpice gallery in New Delhi to raise money for Indian elephant conservation. — Read it from Agence France Presse via Yahoo
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