London’s Richmond Park has become a dumping ground for unwanted pets as diverse as chinchillas, tarantulas and even a goat, the Daily Mail reports.
In some cases, people empty entire aquariums into the famous royal park’s streams and ponds.
Releasing the animals into the park puts them at risk of being unable to fend for themselves, and it can disrupt the park’s ecology, the Daily Mail notes.
Park personnel work with rescue agencies to find new homes for the pets when they’re discovered, said Adam Curtis, assistant park manager.
Among the animals that have been found are hamsters, gerbils, chinchillas, rabbits, terrapins, a tarantula, an American corn snake and a half-starved goat.
Taka the Shiba Inu received free treatment from doctors at a Georgia burn center when he was injured in a fire
Now Taka is ready to give back.
In October 2018, the Shiba Inu, 8 at the time, was badly burned in a house a fire, reports WMGT, and spent months receiving rehabilitative care at — and lots of affection — at Care More Animal Hospital in Martinez, Georgia.
According to WJBF, the veterinary staff at the hospital were assisted by doctors from the Joseph M. Still Burn Center, who volunteered their time to help the canine heal properly.
In January, a newly recovered Taka moved into his forever home with Care More Animal Hospital vet tech Crystal Lesley.
“He’s mine and I just feel like he was meant to be mine and I don’t know. I just can’t explain it,” Lesley told WJBF in January.
After accepting the help of so many animal lovers, Taka wants his turn to help others.
According to WRDW, Taka, who will always have scars from his burns, is training to be a therapy dog at a burn center, so he can provide the same support he received in his time of need.
The 9-year-old dog is being trained by Canine Training Project, and the company’s founder, Mandy Foster, is sure they can teach an older dog new tricks.
“Sometimes it takes a little bit longer, but in Taka’s case he’s nine years old and he has flown through his training. He’s brilliant,” Foster told WRDW.
Taka is currently working on mastering his basic commands, distraction training and earning his American Kennel Club (AKC) Canine Good Citizen certification.
Once he is a certified AKC Canine Good Citizen, Taka will begin working on the more specialized training required for a therapy dog certification.
The Humane Society of the United States revealed the results of an undercover investigation at an animal testing laboratory where thousands of dogs are killed every year. The investigation reveals the suffering and death of beagles and hounds used in toxicity tests for pesticides, drugs, dental implants and other products.
Over the span of the nearly 100 days, an investigator documented nearly two dozen short-term and long-term experiments that involved tests on dogs. The Humane Society of the United States investigator saw dogs killed at the end of studies, and others suffering for months including 36 gentle beagles being tested for a Dow AgroSciences pesticide.
Dow commissioned this laboratory to force-feed a fungicide to beagles for a year, with some dogs being subjected to very high doses—so high that up to four capsules had to be shoved down their throats. Those who survive until the designated end date of the study in July will be killed. Dow has publicly acknowledged that this one-year test is scientifically unnecessary. The United States government eliminated this test as a requirement more than 10 years ago and nearly all countries throughout the world have followed suit through efforts that have been led by Humane Society International in cooperation with members of the industry, including Dow.
Kitty Block, president and CEO of the Humane Society of the United States and president of Humane Society International, said, “The disturbing findings at this facility are sadly not unique. Experiments are happening at hundreds of laboratories each year throughout the country, with more than 60,000 dogs suffering. But that does not have to be the fate for these 36 beagles. For months we have been urging Dow to end the unnecessary test and release the dogs to us. We have gone to considerable lengths to assist the company in doing so, but we simply cannot wait any longer; every single day these caged dogs are being poisoned and are one day closer to being killed. We must turn to the public to join us in urging Dow to stop the test immediately and to work with us to get these dogs into suitable homes.”
This investigation was carried out at Charles River Laboratories in Michigan, and this is only a snapshot of what is going on in the U.S. including at for-profit companies, government facilities and universities for various testing and research purposes. The dogs are often provided by commercial breeders—one of which, Marshall BioResources had more than 22,000 dogs at one facility in June 2018. Beagles are used in testing because of their docile nature, which was evident during this investigation conducted between April and August 2018.
A Tennessee woman said she is forever grateful for her pit bull after the dog intervened before a venomous snake could bite her outside her Nashville home.
Haley McCormack said it was dark when she got home from work and didn’t see the copperhead snake lurking in a leafy corner by the stairs leading to her door.
“It was recoiled back so it was going to strike,” McCormack told CBS affiliate WTVF.
That’s when McCormack’s pit bull, Arlo, sprung into action.
“He got there before I could go any further and he grabbed it by the tail, and then just started kind of shaking it,” she said. “While he was shaking it, it was biting his face. It got him three times for sure, possibly four.”
Arlo killed the snake, but he was seriously hurt and was rushed to a local pet hospital for treatment.
“His neck is super swollen,” McCormack said. “It made his eye almost completely swollen shut.”
Copperhead venom is rarely deadly to humans, but it can be fatal to small animals. Bites can be more dangerous if the venom reaches their facial area.
Arlo was given antivenom, pain medication and CBD oil and is expected to recover.
You’d be forgiven for thinking that things couldn’t get any weirder after Toronto's sewer snake became the talk of the town Tuesday. The massive python was at an gas station in Toronto. However, things in Toronto’s east end have taken another slithery twist, as the family who claimed the sewer-grate snake was their missing pet, have come to realize the snake is, in fact, an imposter, and not their beloved pet snake after all.
At first, the Sannella family was thrilled when they heard a large python snake was found near an Esso gas station in Toronto just after 12 a.m. on Tuesday morning. The discovery of the slithering creature, just 3 kilometres from their east-end Toronto home, led the family to believe the snake must be their missing pet, an 11-month-old ball python, Monty, who had vanished from their home in June.
Upon hearing news of the snake discovery, the Sannella family rushed to their local animal services to retrieve their pet, who had gone missing from their home on the night of June 13. Relieved and excited to have found Monty, the family took their snake home without so much as a second thought.
However, that same night, Monty started showing signs of unusual behaviour. Samantha Sannella, whose 18-year-old son purchased the snake in November last year, noticed the snake lifting up hollow logs in his aquarium, something Monty had never done before. Upon closer examination of some old photos of Monty and his unique patterns, the family realized this snake was not actually Monty at all.
The family named the imposter snake ‘Sneaky Pete,’ and are now in the process of trying to find his real owners, as well as locate their own still-missing python. After seeing a post on Facebook from a man searching for his missing python, Sannella was feeling hopeful. However, Sneaky Pete was also not that man’s lost pet.
Their quest to locate the city’s missing snakes and owners led Sannella to wonder, "How many pythons are loose in the sewers of Toronto?” Answering her own question, she said, “There's a lot, obviously."
While they wait to find his real owner, the family are caring for Sneaky Pete, who seems “extremely happy” in his new home. While Sannella is still hopeful that Monty will come back, she said the ordeal has made her reconsider keeping a snake as a pet.
Ball pythons typically grow to be about 1.2 meters in length and are non-venomous. They kill their prey using an ‘ambush’ technique, jumping out and striking with their teeth, before wrapping their coil around and killing by constriction.
An Australian crocodile farmer who found an orthopedic plate inside a croc's stomach said that he had been told the surgical device was from a person's body and had been contacted by relatives of missing people anxious for clues.
Koorana Crocodile Farm owner John Lever found the plate inside a 4.7-meter (15-foot-5-inch) croc called M.J. during an autopsy in June at his business near Rockhampton in Queensland state.
Lever estimated that M.J. was 50 to 70 years old when he died. M.J. could have eaten the bone that the plate had been attached to by six screws 50 years ago, he said.
All remnants of human tissue attached to the plate had been long digested before M.J. died several months after losing a fight with another croc.
Lever later said that Queensland police had told him they had opened a missing person investigation and asked him to bring the plate to the Rockhampton station.
"I wouldn't call it an investigation, we're making inquiries because we're fascinated by this whole thing," Lever said. "Obviously this crocodile has chomped on something and that plate has been left in its stomach complete with screws."
Lever bought M.J. from a farmer in Innisfail, 1,000 kilometers (600 miles), north of Rockhampton, six years ago. Sometime earlier, M.J. had been trapped in the wild. Crocodiles are protected in Australia and are only trapped if they are a threat to humans.
"We've had a couple of people get in touch with us about their relatives that have gone missing in the northern Queensland area and they're anxious to find out — there's been nothing heard of these people, they've just disappeared," Lever said. "We'll certainly keep these people informed of any new news that we can get."
The last fatal crocodile attack in Australia was in October when a woman was snatched while gathering mussels with her family in a waterhole in a remote part of the Northern Territory.
The last fatal attack in Queensland was a year earlier, when a 79-year-old dementia patient was killed after wandering from a nursing home at Port Douglas.
The man, who has not been named, offloaded several rounds at Mammoth Cave, in Kentucky, after telling other overnight visitors the half-man-half-ape had lunged at him.
Park rangers have since said they had found no evidence Bigfoot was there – but are investigating the fact a firearm was fired.
Madelyn Durand and Brad Ginn, who reported the incident, said the shooter had woken them at 11pm on Sunday by shining a flashlight in their tent.
"We got out and saw a man [and his son] who told us their campsite had been destroyed by someone or something," said Ms Durand, 22. "We heard them coming back about 10 minutes later. We heard them yelling 'I see it'.
“We saw the flash from his gun, and he shot maybe 20 yards from the side of our tent into the pitch-black darkness."
Asked if she was scared, the Western Kentucky University student told CNN: "I was mostly just concerned about him shooting the gun in the middle of the night without him really seeing anything.”
The couple called 911 and decided to hike the five miles back to their car without staying the night, she added.
It is unclear what happened to the shooter but park spokeswoman Molly Schroer said rangers knew who he was and that no threat remained in the area.
Although US laws prohibit the discharge of firearms in national parks, she said no charges had been brought as yet.
The incident comes just eight months after a Montana man reported being shot at in a forest by a gunman who then told him he had mistaken him for Bigfoot.
The legendary creature, also known as Sasquatch, is more commonly associated with America’s Pacific Northwest region but sightings have been reported all over the country.
A potentially habitable 'super-Earth' has been discovered just 31 light-years away from our solar system, astronomers announced.
The planet, named GJ 357 d, is about six times larger than Earth and orbits a dwarf sun GJ 357, much smaller than our own, every 55.7 days. The international team of astronomers that discovered the planet said in a news release that it could "provide Earth-like conditions."
“With a thick atmosphere, the planet GJ 357 d could maintain liquid water on its surface like Earth, and we could pick out signs of life with telescopes that will soon be online,” Lisa Kaltenegger, the director of the Carl Sagan Institute at Cornell and associate professor in astronomy, said in a statement. “If GJ 357 d were to show signs of life, it would be at the top of everyone’s travel list – and we could answer a 1,000-year-old question on whether we are alone in the cosmos.”
Without an atmosphere, the planet would have an equilibrium temperature of 64 degrees below zero, according to NASA, which would make it "more glacial than habitable."
While using NASA’s planet-hunting Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS) in early 2019, a team led by Rafael Luque of the Institute of Astrophysics of the Canary Islands (IAC) on Tenerife first discovered another planet GJ 357 b, a “hot Earth," orbiting the dwarf sun.
The satellite finds other worlds by monitoring the nearest and brightest stars for periodic dips in light. These dips, called transits, suggest a planet may be passing in front of its star.
Two Ontario County residents have been charged with animal cruelty after officials with the Ontario County Humane Society say they seized dozens of dogs from their property.
Officials said Humane Society workers were dispatched to a home on Lawyer Road in Naples last week following a report of dogs running in the road.
The animals reportedly appeared to have matted fur and were flea-ridden.
Officials responded to the home a second time the following day, but were reportedly not allowed inside. A search warrant was executed.
The Humane Society says 73 Cairn terrier-type dogs were seized from the property. They reportedly had parasites and major flea infestation rashes. Breathing equipment and special suits were brought in due to unsafe living conditions, deputies allege.
Richard Justice, 65, and Jane Justice, 70, are facing 73 counts of cruelty to an animal, as well as 73 counts of failure to provide food and water to an impounded animal.
The Sheriff's Department has charged Richard and Jane Justice with animal cruelty.
The Justices were taken to the Ontario County Jail for pre-detention arraignment.
The dogs are being cared for at the Ontario County Humane Society. Officials are looking for donations of blankets, treats, dog food and toys for the dogs.
To learn how to help, call (585) 396-4590.