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June 2, 2016: We've scoured the Web to find the best and most compelling animal stories, videos and photos. And it's all right here.
While chasing a suspect early Saturday morning in Woodland, California, Police K9 Peydro was hit by a passing car. The incident left him with critical injuries to his spine, as well as wounds on his muzzle, and teeth that had to be removed. He had surgery at the UC Davis Veterinary Hospital, where he’s recovering well. "Great news! My partner is able to move his right hind leg so both hind legs are now moving,” his partner, Officer Juan Barrera said in a Facebook post late Wednesday. He said Peydro will probably start physical therapy today — and he will finally get the chance to visit his dog. Although he’s been allowed to FaceTime with Peydro, he hasn’t yet been able to visit because the doctors didn’t want the dog to disturb his spinal repair in his excitement. “The bond between Peydro and Officer Juan Barrera is so strong that even the sound of Juan's voice is enough to excite Peydro,” the Woodland Police said. The Foothills K9 Association is accepting donations to help with the costs of Peydro’s treatment now and in his retirement. — Watch it at CBS Sacramento
The giant panda, an icon of the endangered species list, may soon be downgraded to “vulnerable” because of a jump in their population in the wild. There are still only 1,864 of the black and white bears living in the wild in China, but that’s increased 17 percent over the last decade. Bear specialists at the International Union for Conservation of Nature, which classifies rare species on its “red list,” are reviewing the status of the panda based on the population numbers from a Chinese national survey. — Read it at the U.K.’s Evening Standard
A baby boy was born on May 22 to one of the five rhinos that were relocated to Bardia National Park in Nepal from another national park in the country earlier this year. The move was part of an attempt to establish a second rhino population in the area. “The newborn rhino is a signal of hope and an inspiration for Nepal's rhino conservation efforts,” said Anil Manandhar of WWF Nepal. “It is encouraging to see all the five translocated rhinos and the newborn adapt well in their new home in Babai Valley, which once lost its entire rhino population to poaching.” — See photos from Discovery News via Seeker
An adorable video from the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area shows off two 4-week-old bobcat kittens hiding out in a woodrat’s nest that they’d commandeered. When their mom left for a bit, biologists quickly took measurements of the babies, got blood and hair samples and tagged them. Then, they set up a remote camera to watch for their mom’s return. Tagging the kittens and examining them helps with the species’ conservation, a ranger explained on Facebook. — Watch it from Santa Monica Mountains via Facebook
The kids who are receiving care at the St. Louis Children’s Hospital in Missouri now have a new comfort. The hospital teamed up with Purina to open a pet center so the young patients can visit with their family pets, offering them much-needed emotional support. The room, which is right off the hospital’s entrance, features washable surfaces and can accommodate a child in a wheelchair or hospital bed. The Purina Family Pet Center is the fourth pet center at a pediatric hospital worldwide. — Read it at People Pets
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