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June 9, 2015: We've scoured the Web to find the best and most compelling animal stories, videos and photos. And it's all right here.
A racing pigeon who crash-landed on a North Sea oil rig is recovering at the Scottish SPCA after a helicopter ride back to land. The exhausted bird landed on the platform 160 miles offshore on June 1, and was lucky to be found by Kevin Mitchell, whose girlfriend, Kirsty McQuade, is an animal rescue officer. Mitchell named the bird Pedro. “Kevin managed to catch him and take him inside,” McQuade said. "Pedro appeared to be exhausted and extremely thin so Kevin contacted me for advice. I advised him on what to feed Pedro and he was kept safe in a box on board.” Then, Pedro was able to catch a helicopter ride back to the mainland with some members of the rig’s crew last week. He’s now recovering well at the Scottish SPCA's National Wildlife Rescue Center. — Read it at the U.K.’s BBC News
A kitten named Rudy was found safe at the Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport in Atlanta Monday morning. The hairless kitten was being flown from a breeder in Seattle to his new owner, Tasmin Dayment, in Tampa Bay, Florida, when he disappeared four days ago. Dayment said Rudy made it safely on a Delta Airlines flight from Seattle to Atlanta, but was lost when it came time to switch planes. Only a cracked kennel was found in the cargo area. Dayment launched a “Help us find Rudy” Facebook page and raised $1,300 through GoFundMe. She used the money to fly to Atlanta herself Sunday and hired a private pet investigator. By Monday morning, Rudy had been found. “We arrived home from Atlanta about 40 minutes ago and got right to business!! Getting a bath, eating some more dinner and drinking some water, meeting his sister and aunts,” read a Facebook update about Rudy Monday night. “Night one in his new home, safe and with his family!! We couldn't be happier then we are tonight!!!” — Read it at My Fox Tampa Bay
While Patricia Chase was deployed to Iraq with the Army, she left her adopted Chihuahua, Spankie, with some friends. But when she returned three years ago, she and her children were told that Spankie had gotten out of a backyard fence through a hole and disappeared. “We cried the whole way home,” Chase told Washington’s WJLA in an interview. Then, just last week, Chase got a call from the Washington Humane Society, which had taken the dog in as a stray and found Chase through his microchip. They’ve been reunited, and Spankie is settling back in at home. — Read it at Washington’s WUSA9
A southern pudu has made his debut at the Wildlife Conservation Society’s Queens Zoo in New York. This member of the world’s smallest deer species was born May 12, making this the third year in a row the zoo has successfully raised a fawn. He’s still nursing but will soon transition to a diet of fresh leaves, grain, kale, carrots and hay.He’ll only grow to be about 12 to 14 inches tall at the shoulder. Native to Chile and Argentina, southern pudu have some interesting defensive behaviors. They bark when they sense danger or are being chased and run in a zigzag pattern to escape predators, the zoo explained. — Read it at ABC News and see more cute zoo baby photos
Earlier this year, Risa Feldman’s dog Ike made headlines with his specially constructed wagon. The 15-year-old rescued Irish Wolfhound mix was diagnosed with bone cancer in February and given just months to live. "Due to his age, neither amputation, surgery to repair the fracture or chemo was an option," Feldman said. But Ike was accustomed to daily walks on the beach in California, so Feldman went to Home Depot to look for materials to build him a wagon. In a heartwarming twist, two store employees offered to build the wagon for her, and Ike used it regularly until he passed away in April. After Ike’s death, Feldman wanted to pass on the employees’ good will and donated the wagon Saturday to a dog named T.C. who was recently paralyzed. "To be able to pay it forward and give a wagon to another dog in need, I didn't realize how good it would feel," Feldman said. — Read it at ABC 7 Los Angeles
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