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Nov. 7, 2016: We've scoured the Web to find the best and most compelling animal stories, videos and photos. And it's all right here.
Steve Devries, a lifelong New York Giants fan, stood on the MetLife Stadium field with his daughter on Sunday, awaiting a surprise. The Army veteran had served two tours as a combat medic in Iraq. At the end of the first quarter, an emotional Devries was presented with someone he’d been awaiting for 18 months: a service dog to help with his PTSD and mobility issues. “He’s Levi, and he’s beautiful,” Devries said. “I’m overwhelmed; speechless almost.” He said the dog, who was brought to him thanks to American Humane, Semper K9 and the United War Veterans Council, will help him live a more normal life within his community. “This service dog will give my wife back her husband, and my children will have their father back in their lives,” he said. After the ceremony, Levi happily trotted off the field and into his new life with Devries. — Watch it at CBS New York
New surveys have found that after decades of poaching and habitat loss, the hippo population is finally recovering in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo. “The hippo is one of Africa's iconic species, one that is becoming increasingly threatened by hunting and other factors,” said Deo Kujirakwinja of the Wildlife Conservation Society, who was the lead author of the new research published by the IUCN. “Our findings that hippos are on the increase is encouraging and evidence that efforts to protect hippos and other species are working.” The researchers said the increase is likely thanks to increased protection of the animals in Virunga National Park’s Lake Edward and nearby river systems, and collaboration from fishermen and park authorities. — Read it at Science Daily
About 1,700 young sea turtles were released back into the ocean in Florida on Friday. The “washbacks,” as scientists call them, were found stranded along the state’s East Coast beaches following rough winds and waves caused by hurricanes. They had been rescued and taken to specialized rehabilitation facilities to recover until weather conditions were safe enough for them to be released. The U.S. Coast Guard helped several rescue groups deliver the young turtles home to the open water. — Watch it from Florida Fish and Wildlife via Facebook
A helicopter crew came to the rescue of a man and a woman trying desperately to save their dog from the side of a cliff in Rodeo Beach, California, on Saturday afternoon. The dog tumbled 80 feet down the rocky cliff, and when a man and woman in their 30s scaled down to try to reach him, they got stuck themselves. The Southern Marin Fire Department responded to the scene and called the California Highway Patrol’s helicopter for help, and they were all lifted from the cliffside. The dog suffered some scrapes and bruises but was otherwise OK, and the owners weren’t hurt in the incident. — Watch it at San Francisco’s KRON 4
A “Dancing With the Stars” pro and newlywed got something even better than a mirrorball trophy: a ridiculously cute puppy. “We have a baby & she’s perfect,” Witney Carson, 23, captioned a photo she shared on Instagram on Friday of her husband holding the sleeping puppy. Carson married her high school sweetheart Carson McAllister in January. Carson was most recently paired on the dance floor with rapper Vanilla Ice, but was eliminated in week 4. She shared another photo of the pup when she was awake on Sunday, with the caption, “sorry for the puppy overload, but I mean can you blame me?!” No, we can’t — so keep those pics coming! — See photo at People Pets
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