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August 8, 2016: We've scoured the Web to find the best and most compelling animal stories, videos and photos. And it's all right here.
In the intensity of a weeklong, 155-mile ultramarathon through China’s Gobi Desert, a little stray dog ran right into the heart of competitor Dion Leonard. Leonard said when the dog showed up at the starting line of the grueling race in June, he didn’t think she’d last long. But she showed up again on Day 2, right by his side. She’d clearly picked him. He soon named her Gobi, and they bonded over the next few days. The pup wasn’t allowed to run the fourth and fifth stages of the race because of the extreme heat, but race organizers drove her to the finish line so she could greet Leonard — and when the race ended, they had a medal for her, too. By then, Leonard knew he wanted to bring Gobi home to Scotland, so he and his wife started a crowdfunding campaign to cover the $6,500 in fees that it would cost. Within days, their goal was surpassed, and they’re hoping Gobi will be able to join them in time for Christmas, once she’s cleared medical exams and quarantines. — Read it at the Washington Post
A kitten trapped in the engine of a parked car woke up a whole street in Minneapolis with her cries for help last week. Neighbors realized that the cries were coming from a car that belonged to relatives of one of the homeowners, who had driven from their South Dakota farm and parked in front of their house while they traveled to Alaska. They had heard a cat meowing before they left, but the sound went away before they made the 200-mile drive to Minnesota. The neighbors spent hours on Friday trying to coax the kitten out of the engine, then popped the hood on Saturday and managed to pull her out. “I knew in my mind, if I pulled her out, I’d probably keep her,” said resident Michael Nash. And he did. He’s still deciding on a name, but said Lucky is the one that seems the most fitting. — Watch it at Minnesota’s Fox 9
Keepers at the Cincinnati Zoo were excited to spot an endangered Andean condor chick with parents Gryph and Laurel. The pair has been laying one egg per year since 2008, but this is the first one that’s hatched successfully. “The chick, a female, is about six weeks old and appears to be growing at a normal rate,” said keeper Kim Klosterman. “It’s difficult to get a good look inside the nest box, but we know that the food we put in there has been disappearing quickly.” — See photos at Zooborns
The California Highway Patrol made an unusual rescue from an interstate last week. CHPs got a call about an injured pelican on the road in Truckee. When they arrived, they determined that the bird wasn’t actually hurt, but he was posing a hazard by flying between lanes and dodging cars. The wayward pelican was in luck: responding officer Troy Griesemer has falconry experience, and was able to capture him safely. He gave the bird a ride back to the station in his cruiser, where he stayed until he could be transferred to a wildlife rescue. — Read it at the Huffington Post
After serving nine months in Jordan, Army Pfc. Austin Highcock returned home to Tennessee to find a very excited dog waiting for him. Highcock’s wife, Hailie, recorded the sweet moment Scout saw his owner and went racing toward him, wiggling and whining as he jumped into his arms and smothered him with kisses. The video went viral when she shared it on Facebook. “He’s so excited, every tooth in his head is showing,” Hailie said of her happy dog. — Watch it at Tennessee’s Daily News Journal
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