Pet Scoop: Police Officer Adopts Puppy, Panda Cubs Take First Steps

Feb. 17, 2016: We’ve scoured the Web to find the best and most compelling animal stories, videos and photos. And it’s all right here.

Ohio Police Officer Adopts Puppy
Officer Matt Dunn adopted a puppy that a family was forced to give up due to "heartbreaking circumstances."

Ohio Police Officer Adopts Puppy

A police officer in Shaker Heights, Ohio adopted a puppy after the dog’s owner called the department Feb. 15 to ask if they could help find him a new home. “Heartbreaking circumstances” forced the puppy’s family to give him up, according to the police department’s Facebook page. Police say the resident knew the request wasn’t normal, but wanted to make sure the dog found a loving home. An officer responded and brought the dog back to the station and while police were making calls, Officer Matt Dunn came in to inquire about the commotion and ended up adopting the dog, with the owner’s blessing. — Read it at ABC 5

Panda Cubs Take Wobbly Walk

The Toronto Zoo’s 4-month-old giant panda cubs are learning how to walk, and all of the adorableness is available on video. The zoo just released a video of the brother and sister taking some tentative steps and climbing over a log. The cubs are the first giant pandas born at the zoo. — Read it and watch it at the Toronto Star

Sea Otter Pup 719
Pup 719 is newest sea otter at Shedd Aquarium in Chicago.

Rescued Sea Otter Calls Chicago Aquarium Home

A 10-week-old southern sea otter, Pup 719, is the newest addition to the Shedd Aquarium in Chicago, Illinois. The otter was found stranded on Carmel Beach in Carmel, California., and rescued by the Monterey Bay Aquarium in January. She’s reached several milestones, including learning to climb into and out of her pup pool and eating chopped solid food, and is doing well. — Read it at Shedd Aquarium’s website

‘Adoptable Dog’ Could Become Georgia’s Mascot

On Feb. 16, Georgia House of Delegates members passed H.B. 561 to officially name a state dog. But lawmakers didn’t want to choose one breed over another and the bill’s sponsor said the designation would go to “the adoptable dog.” It’s an effort to recognize the thousands of dogs and cats available to adopt at Georgia animal shelters, as well as to promote animal rescue and adoption. The bill will now go to the Senate for consideration. — Read it at the Atlanta Journal-Constitution

10,000-Plus Sharks Swimming Off Florida Coast

About 10,000 to 12,000 blacktop sharks are currently swimming off the Florida coast and shark researchers say it’s not unusual to see them in the area at this time of year. But don’t worry, says Stephen Kajiura, a professor of biological sciences at Florida Atlantic University, who conducts a survey of migrating sharks every winter: Blacktip sharks typically have little interest in people. Kaijura says sharks typically gather in the warm coastal waters during this time of year to feed. — Read it at Live Science

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