Pet Scoop: Touching Video of Dog and Boy Goes Viral, Sumatran Rhino Caught on Camera

Oct. 3, 2013: We've scoured the Web to find the best and most compelling animal stories, videos and photos. And it's all right here.

Himalaya works her magic to befriend little Hernan in a video that's gone viral.
Himalaya works her magic to befriend little Hernan in a video that's gone viral.

Persistent Dog Wins Boy Over

A video of a Labrador Retriever trying to win over a little boy with Down syndrome has won hearts all over the Internet. The 4-minute clip was posted on YouTube more than a year ago by the boy’s mother, but only recently caught on. Ana Marta Vegas says her son, Hernan, usually avoids physical contact, reports Today. But the dog, Himalaya, was determined to get him to play with her. The gentle Lab nuzzles and licks Hernan before sitting up to place a paw on his shoulder. Finally, the boy leans over to put his arms around Himalaya at about the 3:15 point in the video. Their adorable interaction has been viewed more than 2 million times. — Watch it at YouTube

Thousands of Walruses Huddle on Island

Experts say a lack of sea ice forced about 10,000 Pacific walruses to gather on a remote island in the Chukchi Sea. The 1.5-ton walruses usually “haul out” onto land or ice along Alaska’s coast to rest or warm themselves. But with the Arctic warming and floating ice melting, there have been fewer places for them to go, forcing them into unusually large aggregations. The huge gatherings can put the massive animals at risk for trampling each other if something spooks them, and increase the chance of a disease outbreak. — See photo at National Geographic

60 New Species Found in South American Country

Six new frog species were among 60 new species found by a team led by Conservation International in a mountainous region of southeast Suriname. “At a time when so many frog species are declining and undergoing extinctions worldwide, it is particularly uplifting to discover so many new frogs in a single area,” said Trond Larsen, the team’s leader. The team also discovered some incredible looking new insects, katydids and 11 new species of fish. — See photos at Discovery News

Camera traps caught this image of a rare Sumatran rhino wallowing in the mud on the Indonesian part of the island of Borneo.
WWF Indonesia
Camera traps caught this image of a rare Sumatran rhino wallowing in the mud on the Indonesian part of the island of Borneo.

Rhino Caught on Camera

A network of remote-controlled cameras has captured footage of the Sumatran rhinoceros on the Indonesian part of the island of Borneo — a place where the critically endangered rhino was long thought to have died out. The World Wildlife Federation said the footage from the summer is believed to show the rhinos wallowing in the mud and walking through the forest. “This physical evidence is very important, as it forms the basis to develop and implement more comprehensive conservation efforts for the Indonesian rhinoceros,” said Indonesian Forestry Minister Zulkifli Hasan. There are estimated to be fewer than 275 Sumatran rhinos left in the wild. — Read it at AFP via Yahoo

Treasury Reimburses $500 That Dog Ate

In April, we told you the story of Sundance, the 12-year-old Golden Retriever who helped himself to five $100 bills that he found tucked away in his owners’ car when they stopped to eat dinner on a drive from Montana to Colorado at Christmas time. (Sundance, who has expensive taste, left a $1 bill behind). Owner Wayne Klinkel spent his vacation following the dog around, using gloved hands to collect pieces of the bills and wash them after Sundance passed them. Then, he pieced them back together as best he could and sent them to the U.S. Treasury Department in April, asking to be reimbursed. On Monday, he opened his mail to discover a check for the full $500. “I gave Sundance a pat, showed it to him and told him not to eat it,” Klinkel said. — Read it at Montana’s Independent Record

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