Pet Scoop: San Diego Zoo Panda Cub Gets First Check-up, OCD Link Between Dogs and Humans

August 24, 2012: We've scoured the Web to find the best and most compelling animal stories, videos and photos. And it's all right here.

Baby panda at San Diego Zoo
San Diego Zoo
The San Diego Zoo's new panda cub weighs just 1.5 pounds.

San Diego Zoo’s Panda Baby Gets a Clean Bill of Health

After watching mom Bai Yun cradle her panda cub for 25 days, the staff at the San Diego Zoo finally got a chance to hold her baby — albeit briefly. In a three-minute exam conducted when Bai Yun left her den for breakfast, veterinarians determined that the 1.5-pound cub was healthy, and managed to get the first still photo for us! The little one was calm, but vocalized a few times during the checkup. When Bai Yun heard the squawks, she made it clear that she wanted to get back to her baby, so the exam was cut short. It will be a few more weeks before we know the cub’s gender. — Read it from the San Diego Zoo

Dogs Against Romney Bound for Tampa

Republicans aren’t the only ones preparing for the party’s national convention in Florida. Dogs Against Romney plans to hold a rally in Tampa on Sunday, the day before the convention kicks off. The group was founded to make sure that voters don’t forget the story of Mitt Romney’s trip to Canada, when his dog, Seamus, rode in a crate on the roof of his car. — Read it at The Hill

Gibbons Use Opera Singing Technique in Their Calls

By listening to the squeaky sounds of gibbons making calls after sucking on helium, Japanese scientists found that the animals employ the same technique to make a trilling sound that an opera singer would use. "This gives us a new appreciation of the evolution of speech in gibbons, while revealing that the physiological foundation in human speech is not so unique," said lead researcher Takeshi Nishimura. — Read it at Discovery News

Dog chases its tail

Tail Chasing in Dogs Linked to OCD in Humans

A study that compiled information from 400 Finnish dog owners determined that, like humans who suffer from obsessive compulsive disorders, dogs in the study who chased their tails had an early onset of recurrent compulsive behaviors — and the compulsions could manifest themselves in different ways. Due to the similarities between tail chasing and OCD in humans, the researchers believe that canines could serve as models for studying the genetic background of the disorder in people. — Read it at Smithsonian Magazine

Honey Boo Boo Says Goodbye to Glitzy the Pig

The 6-year-old beauty queen had to give her teacup pig, Glitzy, back to his breeder in this week’s episode of her new TLC show, Here Comes Honey Boo Boo. Although the girl (her real name is Alana Thompson) napped next to the pig in his pen, her mom said that she wasn’t doing enough to help care for her pet. Glitzy’s breeder is now looking for a new home for him. — Read it at People Pets

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