Pet Scoop: Police Dog Mourns Fallen Handler, Grumpy Cat to Star in Holiday Movie

June 12, 2014: We've scoured the Web to find the best and most compelling animal stories, videos and photos. And it's all right here.

Royal Canadian Mounted Police dog Danny sniffs the hat of his partner, Const. David Ross, during a funeral procession.
The Canadian Press / AP
Royal Canadian Mounted Police dog Danny sniffs the hat of his partner, Const. David Ross, during a funeral procession.

K9 Cries at Slain Officer’s Funeral

Danny, a German Shepherd, could be heard whining Tuesday during his partner’s funeral procession and throughout the service. His handler, Constable David Ross, was one of three Royal Canadian Mounted Police officers who were killed in a shooting spree in Moncton, New Brunswick, last week. At one point, the dog, who started working with Ross in December 2012, stood on his hind legs to sniff his partner’s Stetson hat. In response to an outpouring of questions about Danny’s future, the RCMP said Wednesday that although it’s unusual for a police service dog to change handlers, Danny may be kept on the force to have a trial bonding period with a potential new handler. “It wouldn't be fair to Danny to retire him as he loved his work as much as Dave did,” said Ross’ wife, Rachel. "Anytime Danny barked at home, it would be to get Dave to open the truck door so they could go to work.” — Read it at the New York Daily News

Motherhood Puts High Demands on Sea Otters

Adult sea otters have very high energy demands, and a new study finds that a female’s energy demands nearly double while she’s nursing a pup. “What these females are doing to raise a pup is really extraordinary," said UC Santa Cruz biologist Nicole Thometz, who studied otters at the Monterey Bay Aquarium. The findings help explain why female sea otters are often found weak and skinny at the end of the 6-month lactation period and why they may abandon a pup before it’s fully grown. The study was published in Journal of Experimental Biology. — Read it at Phys.org

Smart Crows Fail Cause-and-effect Experiment

Known for their problem-solving abilities and their skills with tools, New Caledonian crows have been called “feathered primates.” But when Alex Taylor from the universities of Cambridge and Auckland tested five wild New Caledonian crows with a task to get a piece of meat, all five of them failed in more than 100 trials. “We thought they’d be good at this,” Taylor said. “It’s interesting that they really, really struggle.” Then the researchers gave the same task to 22 human babies, with the reward being a marble instead of meat, and most of the 2-year-olds passed “with flying colors.” The findings were published in Proceedings of the Royal Society B. — Read it at National Geographic

Poppy was been named the Oldest Cat Currently Living by Guinness World Records in May.
Poppy was been named the Oldest Cat Currently Living by Guinness World Records in May.

World’s Oldest Cat Dies

Less than a month after earning the Guinness World Record title for Oldest Cat Currently Living, the British feline Poppy died Friday at age 24. The cat’s owner, Jacqui West, said she and her family are “devastated” by their loss. “It’s great she managed to get the world record beforehand, it’s almost like she was purposely hanging in there because the process took months.” West has attributed Poppy’s longevity to her diet and exercise, although she was known to enjoy a bit of KFC chicken once in a while. — Read it at the U.K.’s Metro

Grumpy Cat to Star in Lifetime Network Movie

We can’t think of a better Grinch. Grumpy Cat, the Internet celebrity with the permanent frown, is getting a Lifetime holiday movie called “Grumpy Cat’s Worst Christmas Ever.” The story is about a cat who’s been continually overlooked at a pet store and a 12-year-old girl who can communicate with her. "It brings fun and irreverence that we haven't had at Lifetime," says the network’s Arturo Interian. "We're so known for our heartfelt sentimentality that it will poke fun at those stereotypes." — Read it at The Hollywood Reporter

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