Macaw poses in man's mug shot after unlucky court appearanceA 4-year-old macaw named "Bird" is an instant celebrity after appearing in a posed booking mug shot in Oregon with his unfortunate owner.Craig Buckner left Bird in a tree outside court in Washington County while he went in for an appearance this week in an ongoing drug and theft case, said Sgt. Bob Ray, the sheriff's spokesman. Buckner was not expecting to be arrested, but when he fell asleep while waiting for his case to be called, he was taken for a drug urine test and failed, Ray said.When he realized he was going to be arrested, Buckner got very upset and deputies finally realized why."He was very concerned about Bird the bird," Ray said. "Very distraught."Bird was 30 feet up the tree, Ray said, and it was getting dark and rainy. Temperatures were in the low 40s.Deputies realized there was no way Bird - a tropical parrot - would survive overnight, but he would not come to them.They eventually brought Buckner outside and removed the restraints from one of his hands.Bird immediately flew down to Buckner and landed on his shoulder.The macaw stayed with deputies for several hours and feasted on peanuts until they reached a friend who could pick Bird up.While they waited, deputies let Buckner's feathered friend sit on his shoulder in a set up booking shot, just for kicks.They also took a real booking photo of Buckner without Bird - but the macaw still managed to photo bomb it with a few of his colorful feathers, Ray said."It's quite funny," he said. "How can you resist that?"The department is proud of how it landed the Bird, even if it did take extra time on a busy day, Ray said."We're not all robots. We're humans, we love animals and we want to do the right thing," he said."For the animal, and for Mr. Buckner too."mugshot pic: http://media.cmgdigital.com/shared/lt/lt_cache/thumbnail/615/img/photos/2016/12/02/b3/26/mug_shot_bird_custom.jpg
Friendly moose befriends 2 cows on Vermont farmA Vermont couple has chased off a moose that appeared to be bonding with their two cows on a Sheldon farm because they didn't want it to get injured, stuck in their barn or damage their fences.Sharyn Abbott and her husband Tim returned to their home recently and found a female moose in the pasture with their two Belted Galloway cows, Precious and Primrose.The Abbotts said the moose, dubbed "Molly," looked healthy.
In the late 1980s, a moose nicknamed Bullwinkle became a worldwide celebrity when it wandered into a Shrewsbury, Vermont, field, befriended a cow named Jessica and stayed for three months.The Abbotts didn't want the moose to stay that long so they chased it off. But they enjoyed their visitor.
The Abbots said one of the cows, Primrose, was much more friendly with the moose while Precious was more standoffish.The Abbotts don't know if the moose will be back. Said Tim Abbott, "We watch for her every day, thinking she might show up again."-------------------------
For environmental dogs, sniffing out doody is their dutySome pollution-sniffing dogs at the Jersey shore have shown they're No. 1 at sniffing out No. 2.A team of specially trained dogs has pointed out more than 70 spots in three towns near the Navesink River where human waste may be making its way into the waterway, parts of which are closed to shellfishing because of high bacteria levels.They sniffed out potentially broken or leaking sewer pipes, failed septic systems, and places where waste might be mishandled or improperly disposed, according to a report released by the Clean Ocean Action environmental group.Fair Haven Mayor Ben Lucarelli said the dogs were invaluable in laying out in just a few days' time a map for the town to make repairs."At first the scientists and the PhDs we brought down to look at the problem kind of looked at the dogs and said, 'What can they do?'" he said. "It turns out the dogs were excellent. What started out as 'Are you kidding?' evolved into 'Wow, this is awesome!'"The issue is taking on urgency in and near the Navesink, which remains a popular spot for crabbing, boating and sailing. Multimillion-dollar mansions line the river's Middletown shoreline, including one belonging to rock star and philanthropist Jon Bon Jovi.Environmental groups including Clean Ocean Action brought the dogs from Otisfield, Maine-based Environmental Canine Services to Fair Haven, Red Bank and Middletown, New Jersey, in September. The company's dogs have helped find and eliminate sources of pollution in Bayview State Park in Washington state; along Lake Michigan; and in Bridgman, Michigan, among other spots.Environmental and government officials in those places gave the dogs high marks in quickly and efficiently sniffing out the source of pollution that humans were then able to fix.Scott Reynolds, who runs Environmental Canine Services with his, wife Karen, said the dogs were needed to help reverse pollution into the Navesink, whose water quality "is significantly deteriorating day by day."The dogs are rescued from shelters and specially trained to detect human waste in the same way that other dogs are trained to sniff out drugs or explosives. They give an alert either by barking or sitting down when they detect something. As important as what they find is what they don't find: places where the dogs don't alert are generally considered to be safe.Comparisons with laboratory tests - which are more expensive and take longer to get results - show the dogs are highly accurate and will not react to the presence of animal waste.-------------------------
Most people know the impact second-hand smoke has on humans. But what about your pets???According tothe U.S. Food and Drug Administration both secondhand smoke — which lingers in the air your animal breathes in — and third-hand smoke hurt pets. Though less well-known than second-hand smoke, third-hand smoke is residue (harmful compounds that are left behind, such as nicotine) that can get on skin and clothes, as well as furniture, carpets, and other things where a smoker lives.Third hand smoke can also get on pet’s fur, so, if your dog or cat grooms itself or another animal, he’s ingesting the residues as well. According to the FDA, this residue can have many negative impacts on animals.For instance, if dog already has breathing or lung issues, inhaling tobacco smoke can worsen their symptoms and chronic coughing.Dogs also can develop changes in their airways and lungs that are similar to those found in people who smoke.And studies show that cats living in smoking households have a two- to four-times increased risk of an aggressive type of mouth cancer called oral squamous cell carcinoma.For more details on how second and third-hand smoke may hurt your pets, visit the FDA site on smoking and pets.-----------------------
Amtrak to let pets ride for free for a limited time...
Amtrak has teamed up with Universal Pictures Home Entertainment for a “Pets Ride Free” promotion timed to the DVD release of the film, The Secret Life of Pets.The offer will be available on trips booked Dec. 6 through Dec. 11, or while supplies last. Pets will be able to ride at no additional cost on participating routes from Dec. 9 through March 31, 2017.More than 40 Amtrak markets will participate in the program, including New York City, Los Angeles, Chicago, Boston, Washington, D.C., Philadelphia, Minneapolis, Miami, and San Francisco.Amtrak first experimented with allowing dogs and cats on its trains in 2014, with a pilot program in Illinois. Last fall and winter, it expanded the pilot to the popular Northeast Corridor. After a successful start, Amtrak announced earlier this year that its pet program would become permanent on the Northeast Regional and Downeaster routes from Norfolk, Va., to Brunswick, Maine, and on coach service on all cross country routes except for the Auto Train. Pets are also allowed on the Acela express service on weekends and holidays.During the first year of the program, more than 15,000 dogs and cats traveled on Amtrak with their owners.The price for taking your pet on the rails with you is $25. The pet must be in an enclosed carrier. Both cannot exceed 20 lbs.Universal Pictures Home Entertainment released The Secret Life of Pets on Digital HD on Nov. 22. The film will be available On Demand, on 4K Ultra HD, Blu-ray 3D, Blu-ray, and DVD with bonus content on Dec. 6.The animated feature-film, one of the highest grossing of the year, is a comedy about the lives pets lead when their owners leave for work or school. It features the voices of Louis C.K., Ellie Kemper, Eric Stonestreet, Kevin Smart, Dana Carver, Albert Brooks, and many others.To travel with a small dog or cat on Amtrak, tickets must be purchased at least three days prior to travel. Only one pet is allowed in the enclosed carrier on trips up to seven hours in length. To learn more about the Amtrak pet program, go to Amtrak.com/pets. To learn more about the movie promotion, got to Amtrak.com/secretlifeofpets.