Pet Scoop: Polar Bear Cub Takes First Steps, Firefighter Falls Through Ice Saving Dog

Feb. 27, 2017: We've scoured the Web to find the best and most compelling animal stories, videos and photos. And it's all right here.

An adorable polar bear cub steps out at the Hellabrunn Zoo in Munich.
An adorable polar bear cub steps out at the Hellabrunn Zoo in Munich.

Adorable Cub Captures Hearts

At 18 pounds and 14 weeks old, a fluffy little polar bear cub made her debut last week at the Hellabrunn Zoo in Germany, taking her first steps. The cub was “wobbly on her feet, but full of enthusiasm,” said a zoo employee. The little girl, who hasn’t been named yet, likes to explore her exhibit while her mom, Giovanna, gets some rest. “For Giovanna, the real work as a polar bear mum now begins as she will have to keep an eye on the little one. But even this she will manage with no problem,” said zoo director Rasem Baban. Today is International Polar Bear Day, and hopefully this cutie will be ready to celebrate. — Read it at the NY Post

Baby Aardvark Saved With CPR

After a long and difficult labor on February 2, aardvark Lotte finally delivered her baby at 2 a.m. at the Wroclaw Zoo in Poland — but the little one wasn’t breathing. Keeper Andrzej Miozga jumped in and performed CPR for nearly an hour, saving the baby’s life. The exhausted mom rejected her cub, so the baby is now getting around-the-clock care from a dedicated team of keepers. The baby has quickly become a favorite of the animal care team. — Read it at Zooborns

Researchers Find Lemur Faces Are Unique

Scientists need to keep their distance to observe lemurs in a natural setting, which makes it difficult to identify individual animals and track their activity over time. Now a new method uses facial recognition software, which is described in a new study. LemurFaceID requires a “mug shot” or full frontal view of an individual lemur’s face, to be uploaded to a database. The software then identifies unique facial features like facial hair patterns to identify them. The study was published in the journal BioMed Central Zoology. — Read it at Live Science

A Boston firefighter saved Maggie the dog after she fell through the ice on a pond.
A Boston firefighter saved Maggie the dog after she fell through the ice on a pond.

Firefighter Rescues Dog From Ice

A firefighter in Boston made a daring rescue of a dog who fell through cracking ice on Jamaica Pond last week. A video shot by a witness shows Boston Firefighter Mike Ronayne crawling out onto the melting ice while wearing a suit designed to protect him from the frigid water. He ended up falling through the ice himself, but he was still able to pull Maggie out of the water, and she was able to walk across what was left of the ice to be happily reunited with her owner. “Maggie is such a sweetheart and I’m so glad she’s ok!” wrote Emily Andrea Robertson, who shared the video on Facebook. Firefighters then pulled Ronayne back to the shore. — Watch it at

Dog Runs Into the Lead in Bike Race

An amazing video shows a dog joining a cycling race, and showing some incredible speed and endurance. The video has gone viral, and although the details of race are unclear, it’s believed to be from an Italian gran fondo. The dog sprints to keep up with the motorcyclists pacing the race, keeping ahead of all the racers. The cyclists seem unsure of what to do, staying behind the dog for some time before he finally starts to tire, giving the peloton a chance to go around him. We’re hoping the pup made it back home safely and got some much-needed rest! — Watch it at the U.K.’s Cycling Weekly


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