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Talkin' Pets News

February 4, 2023

Host - Jon Patch

Co-Host - Jasmine the Dog Trainer

Producer - Lexi Adams

Network Producer - Jayla Green

Social Media - Bob Page

“Dogs are an important part of our families, and people take great care in choosing a name,” said AKC Executive Secretary Gina DiNardo. “It’s fun to see if a dog’s personality is reflected in its name.”

According to AKC registration statistics and Canine Partners enrollments, the most popular girl’s name of 2022 was Luna and the most popular boy’s name was Max. Bookending the list at the bottom for girls was Zola and Willie for boys.

The top 10 names for 2022 were:

GIRL NAMES

BOY NAMES

1. Luna

1. Max

2. Bella

2. Milo

3. Daisy

3. Cooper

4. Lucy

4. Charlie

5. Willow

5. Teddy

6. Penny

6. Tucker

7. Sadie

7. Buddy

8. Maggie

8. Bear

9. Rosie

9. Rocky

10. Ruby

10. Leo

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A radio signal 9 billion light-years away from Earth has been captured in a record-breaking recording, Space.com.

The signal was detected by a unique wavelength known as a "21-centimeter line" or the "hydrogen line," which is reportedly emitted by neutral hydrogen atoms.

The signal captured by the Giant Metrewave Radio Telescope in India could mean that scientists can start investigating the formation of some of the earliest stars and galaxies, the report said.

Researchers detected the signal from a "star-forming galaxy" titled SDSSJ0826+5630, which was emitted when the 13.8 billion-year-old Milky Way – the galaxy where Earth resides – was just 4.9 billion years old.

"It's the equivalent to a look-back in time of 8.8 billion years," author and McGill University Department of Physics post-doctoral cosmologist Arnab Chakraborty said in a statement this week.

Galaxies reportedly emit light across a wide range of radio wavelengths. But until recently, 21-cm-wavelength radio waves had only been recorded from galaxies nearby.

"A galaxy emits different kinds of radio signals. Until now, it's only been possible to capture this particular signal from a galaxy nearby, limiting our knowledge to those galaxies closer to Earth," Chakraborty said.

The signal allowed astronomers to measure the galaxy’s gas content and therefore find the galaxy’s mass.

This determination has led scientists to conclude that this far-off galaxy is double the mass of the stars visible from Earth, the report said.

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The Clearwater Marine Aquarium in Florida announced the death of one of its dolphins.

The aquarium said Hemingway the Dolphin, a rescue dolphin who was around 37 years old, died while being cared for by aquarium and veterinary staff.

According to the announcement, Hemingway showed a change in his behavior, leading to animal care staff to begin treating him for a “suspected gastrointestinal condition.” Veterinarians also assisted in Hemingway’s treatment.

“Together, our team did all that was possible to keep Hemingway comfortable,” the aquarium said. “He will be missed by us all.”

Hemingway was originally found stranded off of Fiesta Key in July 2019. He was allowed to join the Clearwater Marine Aquarium in June 2020 after he was found to have health issues and hearing loss that made him non-releasable.

He spent his last years at the Ruth & J.O. Stone Dolphin Complex with dolphins Apollo and Nicholas.

“During his time with us, CMA staff was able to share Hemingway’s story and the importance of protecting dolphins in the wild,” the aquarium said. “Our team learned new practices and continued to improve our approach in caring for dolphins with hearing loss.”

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The New York Times reports that a growing breed of high-end dog walkers in New York City are pulling in six figures thanks to a combo of pandemic puppies and a return to work.

Bethany Lane, 35, founded her dog-care business Whistle & Wag in 2014 as a way to make rent and pay off loans after she pursued a public health career. And now, that side hustle is the tail wagging her financial growth.

Charging upwards of $35 per walk, Lane has paid off her loans, hired additional dog walkers, and even bought a vacation home. While she didn't get specific, she informed the Times that her business was comfortably in six figures.

"If I would have told my younger self I can make a living caring for dogs," Lane told the Times, "I never would have believed it."

The ASPCA reports that more than 23 million American households got a dog or cat during the pandemic. That's a lot of new family members that need tending to.

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Rats, mold, pollution, and trash plague many U.S. cities big and small — but the problem is worse in some than in others. LawnStarter ranked 2023’s Dirtiest Cities in America following one of the trashiest times of the year, the winter holiday season. We compared over 150 of the biggest U.S. cities across four categories, including pollution, living conditions, infrastructure, and consumer satisfaction.

 

 

 

Dirtiest Cities in America

Rank

City

1

Houston, TX

2

Newark, NJ

3

San Bernardino, CA

4

Detroit, MI

5

Jersey City, NJ

6

Bakersfield, CA

7

San Antonio, TX

8

Fresno, CA

9

Oklahoma City, OK

10

Yonkers, NY

 

Cleanest Cities in America

Rank

City

1

Virginia Beach, VA

2

Sunnyvale, CA

3

Norfolk, VA

4

Des Moines, IA

5

Fremont, CA

6

Buffalo, NY

7

Winston-Salem, NC

8

Huntsville, AL

9

Greensboro, NC

10

Roseville, CA

 

  • Houston, We Have a Problem: Space City lands at the top of our ranking’s trash heap as America’s Dirtiest City and the third most polluted. In fact, a recent study found that the city’s petrochemical facilities severely violate EPA safety guidelines.

    Our data supports those findings: Houston ranks third worst in greenhouse gas emissions from large industrial facilities. The city has the biggest cockroach problem, too, according to Census. 
  • Salt Life = the Good Life? “Coastal” doesn’t necessarily equate with “clean,” but cities close to water, particularly in California, Virginia, and North Carolina, dominate the 10 cleanest spots in our ranking.

    For the second consecutive year, Virginia Beach, Virginia, outshines all other cities in our ranking. Farther inland cities like Fremont, California (No. 148), and Winston-Salem, North Carolina (No. 146) also sparkled. These cities all boast low pollution levels and good living conditions.
  • All Choked Up: Los Angeles (15th dirtiest) is often characterized as the poster child of pollution. However, the Inland Empire region east of LA has consistently ranked worst for air quality in the nation.

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Italians are mourning the death of a rare brown bear who became famous for his jaunts to small mountain villages in the Abruzzo region.

Affectionately known as Juan Carrito, the three-year-old Marsican bear was killed after being hit by a car in the town of Castel di Sangro.

“It is with great pain that I learned of the news of the death of Juan Carrito, the most famous and loved Marsican bear in Abruzzo,” the regional president, Marco Marsilio, said. “His loss saddens not only Abruzzo but the whole world that discovered Abruzzo and the beauty of bears through the numerous videos [of Carrito] since he was a cub.”

Carrito became known for his outings to populated areas, visits which became even more brazen after two failed attempts to rewild him. The town considered “home” was Roccaraso, a ski resort where he scoffed a batch of freshly baked biscuits after breaking into a bakery in late 2021.

Carrito was also spotted drinking from a fountain in the village, and would often stay overnight, sleeping among pine trees before going in search of food, rummaging through bins and dining off leftover pizza and sandwiches.

The biscuit heist led to the bear being captured and banished to a remote area in the mountains, but he later returned, leading to a second capture in March last year and a period in an enclosure. That attempt to rewild him also failed, and Carrito returned to Roccaraso, where he was seen earlier this month on a ski slope.

One explanation for Carrito’s sociability was his upbringing: he was one of four cubs born to a bear called Amarena. Such was the rarity of the event – on average, female Marsicans give birth to between one and three cubs – that the family attracted much attention. One of the first villages in which Amarena and her cubs appeared was Carrito, hence the nickname.

The Marsican is a critically endangered subspecies of the brown bear living in the Apennine mountains that straddle the Abruzzo, Lazio and Molise regions.

Their numbers across the area have dwindled to about 50 over the past two decades, thought to be the result of illegal hunting or the animals being hit by vehicles.

“We are all very shocked,” Mena Ricci, a regional representative for the World Wildlife Fund, told La Presse news agency. “Unfortunately, this was a death that none of us wanted to hear.”

Luciano D’Alfsono, a deputy with the Democratic party, said the death of Carrito was sad news “for all of us in Abruzzo”, adding that Carrito would be remembered for his “irreverent and free nature”.

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Alley Cat Allies is condemning the planned slaughter of cats on two island locations on opposite ends of the globe – the Cayman Islands in the Caribbean Sea and Île Amsterdam in the Indian Ocean. In both cases, governments are planning the mass killing of cats on individual islands under the false label of conservation.

“Slaughtering animals is not conservation, and there is no such thing as humanely attempting to wipe out an entire population of animals in an ecosystem,” said Coryn Julien, communications director for Alley Cat Allies. “These policies call for the massacre of cats, plain and simple. Killing one species in an effort to protect another is immoral, unethical and research shows it can have dire consequences for entire ecosystems.”

Julien explained that removal of outdoor cats is not the easy fix some may expect. While it may temporarily reduce the number of cats in a given area, it is ultimately counterproductive, because the population of cats will rebound quickly. This is known as the Vacuum Effect, and it has been documented worldwide in many species. Cats who were not trapped, and new cats from nearby areas, will simply move into the territory to take advantage of the resources that sustained the first group of cats, and breed back to the capacity of the area.

“Leading biologists, climate scientists and environmental watchdogs agree that climate change and development, which leads to habitat destruction, are the leading causes of species loss,” Julien added. “Conservationists should be focusing on addressing these real threats, not looking to cats as a scapegoat and wasting money on cruel and ultimately futile schemes to eradicate cat populations.”

More information about the relationship between cats and wildlife, and humane, effective, evidence-based approaches to managing community cat populations, is available online at alleycat.org.  

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If cultivated meat is marketed and sold as pet food first, people are less likely to buy it and eat it when products are then marketed for human consumption, a new report published today by global food awareness organisation, ProVeg International, suggests.

The report, called “Cultivated Pet Food for Cats and Dogs”, is based on a survey of 1,000 UK residents who were asked about their perception of cultivated meat as pet food, compared to cultivated meat as human food. 

“People are potentially put off by the idea of eating cultivated meat if they first learn that it’s fed to pets and then later told that it’s sold as human food as well,” Stephanie Jaczniakowska-McGirr, Director of Corporate Engagement at ProVeg, said.

“The food industry needs to take this into consideration to ensure that cultivated meat makes the maximum impact on the market when regulatory approvals are granted,” she said.

What the survey found 

When presented with a definition of cultivated meat (including a simple technical description and expected benefits), 47% of pet owners with cats and 48% of those with dogs said they would probably or definitely feed cultivated meat to their pet, showing that there is already a strong interest in cultivated meat for pet food.

But the report highlights a clear need to frame cultivated meat as human food first. The report highlights the following findings:

  • Of the respondents who saw cultivated meat framed as human food first, 47% said they would eat it. Of those who saw cultivated meat framed as pet food first, just 37% said they would eat it. 
  • Of those who saw cultivated meat framed as human food first, 46% said they would buy it. Of those who saw cultivated meat framed as pet food first, just 37% said they would buy it.
  • Of those who saw cultivated meat framed as human food first, 45% expected the product to be tasty. Of those who saw cultivated meat framed as pet food first, just 34% expected the product to be tasty. 
  • A total of 43% of respondents who saw cultivated meat framed as human food first expected the product to be enjoyable, while only 32% of respondents who saw cultivated meat first framed as pet food first expected to enjoy it. 
  • When presented with cultivated meat framed as human food first, 53% of respondents expected cultivated meat to be good for the environment and 53% expected it to be good for the animals. When presented with cultivated meat framed as pet food first, 58% and 47% of respondents expected cultivated meat to be good for the environment and the animals respectively.

The results show that portraying cultivated meat as pet food before portraying it as human food could reduce the acceptance of the products by 10 percentage points. 

A possible explanation is that pet food is usually seen as inferior to human food, with conventional pet food typically being composed of the remaining carcass (bones, organs, blood, beaks, etc.) of slaughtered animals after the meat has been removed for human consumption.  

However, regardless of the framing used, the report notes that respondents do not necessarily expect cultivated meat to be affordable, easy to access, healthy, and safe. 

“Considering that cellular agriculture offers the opportunity to transform our food system for the better, governments have a major role to play in accelerating progress in the field, for instance by funding open-access research to address knowledge gaps and building national cellular-agriculture ecosystems. As cellular agriculture progresses, it is important to provide more scientific evidence on health and safety aspects of cultivated meat in order to increase people’s positive perceptions of the product,” the report concludes.

Climate role of cultivated meat

Cultivated meat, which is real meat obtained by cell cultivation rather than breeding, raising, and slaughtering animals, has the potential to replace conventional meat and reduce conventional meat’s massive environmental impact. Animal-based foods are currently responsible for about 20% of global greenhouse gases. 

But reducing meat’s overall impact also applies to pet food. With 470 million pet dogs and around 370 million pet cats on the planet, pet food is estimated to be responsible for a quarter of the environmental impact of meat production in terms of the use of land, water, fossil fuels, phosphates, and pesticides. 

Cultivated meat is still to be approved in any market globally, except Singapore, but the US FDA recently made progress in setting out its’ regulatory requirements. 

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At a laboratory in southern Africa, Tariq correctly identified all six spit samples known to be positive for tuberculosis, the world's second most fatal infectious disease.

Tariq is no scientist, though. He's a lab rat—an African giant pouched rat (Cricetomys gambianus), to be exact. Every weekday, the trained rodent and eight of his brethren take turns in a glass-sided cage at Eduardo Mondlane University's College of Veterinary Medicine.

Underneath the cage floor, a removable tray with ten samples of human mucus is inserted. Tariq walks the length of the cage, scratching the floor when he suspects that a sample is positive for tuberculosis, an airborne bacterial disease.

He works rapidly, taking only eight minutes to get through five trays containing a total of 50 samples. "Rats are very fast," said his trainer, Catia Souto, adding that one rat can evaluate more samples in ten minutes than a lab technician can evaluate in a day.

Training rats to detect TB is a relatively new endeavor for APOPO, the Belgian nonprofit organization that's best known for using rats to find land mines. APOPO began using TB rats in Tanzania in 2008 and in Mozambique in 2013. Currently, the animals work in 21 medical centers in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania's capital, and double-check 75 percent of potential TB samples from medical centers in the Mozambique capital of Maputo.

Like the battle against land mines, the fight against TB—which claimed 480,000 lives in Africa in 2012, 58,000 of them in Mozambique, according to the World Health Organization—is badly in need of an innovative, rapid, and affordable detection technique.

"We know that we need a new approach in the diagnosis of TB, so this could be one of the approaches," said Gaël Claquin, a TB/HIV specialist in Mozambique who is not directly involved in the APOPO project.

And so far, rats seem to be a promising solution: In the first 16 months of the Maputo program, the rats evaluated samples from roughly 12,500 patients. Of those, 1,700 had been found positive at the health clinics. The rats detected another 764 patients, an increase in detection rate of around 44 percent, according to APOPO.

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More than 100 firefighters responded to a raging inferno that ultimately killed 100,000 chickens at an egg farm in Bozrah, Conn., officials said.

The blaze was brought under control late last Saturday afternoon after a four-and-a-half-hour battle involving 16 fire departments, according to Fox 61.

The Bozrah Town Fire Marshal is investigating the three-alarm chicken coop fire.

The Salvation Army, which was on the scene providing food to firefighters, confirmed with officials that around 100,000 chickens died in the fire.

The fire comes as egg prices are already soaring in part due to a large number of avian influenza deaths in the United States. More than 58 million birds have died from avian influenza since last year, according to U.S. Agriculture Department Data.

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Research from Australia shows that male northern quolls — carnivorous marsupials resembling chubby squirrels — typically mate themselves to death within a year. Females last four times longer. The males “cover large distances to mate as often as possible and it seems that their drive is so strong that they forgo sleeping to spend more time searching for females,” said co-author Christofer Clemente. After fitting backpacks on wild quolls, researchers found some males walked over 6 miles a night in search of sex. “They become easy prey, are unable to avoid vehicle collisions, or simply die from exhaustion,” said lead author Joshua Gaschk.

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The Dallas Police Department is investigating another missing animals case at the Dallas Zoo after two tamarin monkeys were reported missing from the zoo on Monday.

A spokesperson for the Dallas PD tells PEOPLE that a preliminary investigation into their disappearance determined that "an intentional cut" was made into a tamarin monkey enclosure at the zoo.

While the investigation remains ongoing, officials believe that the animals were intentionally taken from the enclosure.

A representative for the Dallas Zoo adds in a statement to PEOPLE that emperor tamarin monkeys would likely stay close to home. When the zoo searched near their habitat and across zoo grounds, they were not able to be located.

Monday's incident comes after the Texas-based zoo reported a string of missing and injured animal cases in the past weeks.

Most recently, the Dallas Zoo reported that one of its endangered vultures living in the zoo's Wilds of Africa habitats was found dead over the weekend and added in a Facebook post on Sunday: "The animal care team is heartbroken over this tremendous loss. Please keep them in your thoughts as they process what has happened."

A 4-year-old clouded leopard named Nova went missing on Jan. 14., prompting the zoo to close for the day.

While she was located near her enclosure later that day, an investigation by Dallas PD on Jan. 16 showed that a cutting tool was used to make an opening in the fencing surrounding Nova's habitat on the same day of her escape.

The same type of cut was found in the area housing the zoo's langurs, a small breed of monkey. The cutting of the two enclosures remains under investigation.

In response to these two incidents, the Dallas Zoo "added additional cameras throughout the Zoo and increased onsite security patrols during the overnight hours," according to the facility's post about the vulture's death.

"We will continue to implement and expand our safety and security measures to whatever level necessary to keep our animals and staff safe," the zoo added before concluding the post with a promise to "provide updates as we know more."

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A 35-foot male humpback whale became stranded and died after it washed up on the shore of a Long Island beach Monday morning, officials said.

The massive mammal first became beached on Lido Beach in the town of Hempstead at 6:30 a.m. and died just 30 minutes later, Town of Hempstead Supervisor Don Clavin told Gothamist. Crews were dispatched immediately and began using construction equipment to try and get the whale away from the rising tide.

“We had a heavy duty crane that, initially, some of the cables snapped, because when it beached itself, it really kind of dug itself into the shoreline,” Clavin said.

In a picture taken with a drone, emergency crews try to determine how to handle the carcass of a humpback whale that washed up on shore.

The area was secured to keep curious onlookers at a safe distance from the carcass.

“To see a whale of that size so close, it is stunning. But the circumstances surrounding it, to me, it was very, very sad and it was almost heartbreaking. Something so beautiful laying there,” Clavin said. “You can't help people's curiosity and I understand that.”

The Atlantic Marine Conservation Society was set to collect data on the animal on Monday, and plans on further examining the whale later this week, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. The organization is investigating an increase in humpback whale strandings since January of 2016.

After the whale stranded is thoroughly examined, Clavin said the town will work with state and federal governments to find it a proper burial site. Most likely broken up and buried in the dunes!

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A family’s beloved dog is dead after he was repeatedly tased and dragged by Lodi, California police officers on the afternoon of January 24. His name was Enzo, and the two-year-old Husky was running free because a door was accidentally left unlatched at his home, allowing him to escape.

Video uploaded to social media captures Enzo’s last moments alive…and the footage is brutal to watch. Enzo can be seen standing in the street when an officer approaches and discharges a taser gun. Enzo falls to his side, briefly regains his footing, and then falls over once again.

While Enzo is being tased, an animal control officer secures a catchpole snare around his neck.

The non-stop deployment of the taser, in addition to being dragged with a snare around his neck, causes Enzo to die. His last moments alive were filled with pain and terror.

On the video, a stunned witness can be heard questioning one of the officers about why Enzo was tased and dragged. The man can be heard stating that Enzo had been standing there with him and his girlfriend, allowing them to pet him before the police showed up.

Why was Enzo tased THE ENTIRE TIME that he was being dragged by his neck? Why was he tased at all if he had been standing there, letting strangers pet him? Why was he dragged by his neck?

Suffice it to say, Enzo’s death has caused outrage among nearly everyone who has viewed the shocking video. And his owners, Anna Marquez, and Aline Galeno are rightfully devastated by Enzo’s untimely and cruel demise.

The police claim that Enzo had been trying to attack kids before they were called; a claim that is disputed. In fact, it has been alleged that the claim of Enzo acting aggressively was a lie created to save the officers who were involved from being held accountable for Enzo’s death.

The individuals identified as being involved in Enzo’s death are Officers Timothy Ivey, Chris Delgado, and animal control officer Jordan Kranich.

To sign a petition for the justice for Enzo go to www.animalvictory.com

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On Tuesday genetic engineering company Colossal Biosciences announced it has secured $150 million in seed funding to resurrect the famously extinct flightless bird — along with the woolly mammoth and the thylacine, or Tasmanian tiger. Colossal, founded in 2021 by Harvard geneticist George Church and entrepreneur Ben Lamm, aims to edit the genomes of living relatives of the extinct creatures to create proxy species that would fill their empty ecological niches. All three animals’ genomes have been sequenced, but “de-extinction” will probably take years: It relies on technology that’s still being developed — though it could eventually benefit human health care too.

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A food blogger in Nanchong, China, is in deep water after buying, cooking and consuming a six-foot shark and broadcasting it to millions of followers. The woman, username Tizi, said, “It may look vicious, but its meat is truly very tender.” She then tore chunks from the carcass with her teeth. Great white sharks are endangered in China and it’s illegal to kill, buy or eat them, and Tizi has been fined $18,500. It’s unclear if she’ll face jail time — but authorities may look higher up the food chain for the person who sold the ill-fated shark online.

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Everyone is familiar with security patrol dogs, and how some service dogs use their keen sense of smell to detect explosives on land. Since 1959, the U.S. Navy has trained dolphins and sea lions as teammates for our Sailors and Marines to help guard against similar threats underwater. The Navy’s Marine Mammal Program has been homeported on Point Loma since the 1960’s.  

Dolphins naturally possess the most sophisticated sonar known to science. Mines and other potentially dangerous objects on the ocean floor that are difficult to detect with electronic sonar, especially in coastal shallows or cluttered harbors, are easily found by the dolphins. Both dolphins and sea lions have excellent low light vision and underwater directional hearing that allow them to detect and track undersea targets, even in dark or murky waters. They can also dive hundreds of feet below the surface, without risk of decompression sickness or “the bends” like human divers. Someday it may be possible to complete these missions with underwater drones, but for now technology is no match for the animals. 

Recovering objects in harbors, coastal areas, and at depth in the open sea, sea lions locate and attach recovery lines to Navy equipment on the ocean floor. Dolphins are trained to search for and mark the location of undersea mines that could threaten the safety of those on board military or civilian ships. Both dolphins and sea lions also assist security personnel in detecting and apprehending unauthorized swimmers and divers that might attempt to harm the Navy’s people, vessels, or harbor facilities.

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The UK’s ugliest dog has been named following an extensive country-wide search.

Photography company ParrotPrint.com considered the unsightliness of every aesthetically challenged dog entered by UK owners and decided that there could be only one winner.

Peggy, the winning pooch, captured the hearts of the nation when she appeared on BBC Breakfast, This Morning, Channel 5 News and BBC 5 Live to help promote the contest.

She lives with her loving dog mummy and family in East Yorkshire and has lapped up the attention ever since the media fell in love with her hairless body and lolling tongue.

The adorable dog will soon be photographed claiming her prize of a makeover and pamper session at a doggie spa before receiving a commemorative canvas print for her wall at home.

Head judge Matt Dahan said: “ When we launched this contest I never once thought we’d find a dog like her who manages to be both ugly and so, so cute all at the same time.

“We can’t wait to give her the pamper session she so deserves and think that she will become a real star in the future.”

To find out which dog has won the title and been named as the ugliest dog in the UK please head over to: https://parrotprint.com/uglydogcompetition.

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Is your pet a bigger sports fan than you? A new survey suggests that, yes, they probably are.

A poll of 2,000 American pet parents found that four in five claimed their pets to be bigger sports fans than them, out of the 68% who identified as sports fans themselves.

That’s probably because we’re bringing them to the viewing party: 79% said they watch sports with their pets and 83% even said their furry friends have a favorite sport to watch.

Commissioned by PetSmart and conducted by OnePoll, the study also revealed that 78% of pet parents think their pet has a favorite athlete, which may be why a majority of them (87%) have either named a pet after an athlete or would consider naming a pet after an athlete in the future.

Some respondents even shared their sports-inspired names: Lionel, Messi, Bolt, Fenway, Maholmes, Jackson, Hulk, Labron, Japhet and many more.

Pet sport-mania even goes into themed items. Two in three pet parents (65%) said they’ve bought their pet a sports team-themed item including pet bandanas (19%), collars (19%), jerseys (18%) and stuffed toys (17%) all sporting their favorite teams.

Of those who have bought sports team-themed clothing for their pets, 90% will dress their pet in the item when their team is playing.

For many, it pays off: 83% swear they’ve seen their favorite team win a game because their pet was present. A quarter (26%) said they watch sports with their pets because they’re actually a lucky charm.

“We know that pet parents will do anything for their pets, and there’s no question that pets are the real MVPs in our lives,” said Will Smith, senior vice president and chief marketing officer at PetSmart. “This new data not only reveals a pet’s excitement for sports, but it also highlights how we bring pets into all our favorite activities as they are a reflection of our own personalities and interests.”

The survey also found sports are just one type of show pets like to watch. Respondents shared their pets like to watch cartoons (45%), nature shows (41%), movies (41%) and comedy specials (37%).

How do pet parents know their pets are even watching what’s on the TV? The survey asked and found that after it gets turned on, pets react by staring at the screen (42%). And once they recognize something on-screen, they are likely to react by following the action with their eyes (54%), becoming vocal (52%) or perking their ears up (50%).

Overall, 69% of owners said their pets love watching shows with them.

TOP SPORTS PETS LIKE TO WATCH

Football - 40%

Soccer - 19%

Basketball - 14%

Baseball - 13%

Golf - 4%

Hockey - 3%

Tennis - 3%

Motor racing - 2%

Bowling - 1%

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A whale that washed ashore in Hawaii over the weekend likely died in part because it ate large volumes of fishing traps, fishing nets, plastic bags and other marine debris, scientists said Thursday, highlighting the threat to wildlife from the millions of tons of plastic that ends up in oceans every year.

The body of the 56-foot (17-meter) long, 120,000-pound (54,431-kilogram) animal was first noticed on a reef off Kauai. High tide brought it ashore last Saturday. Kristi West, the director of the University of Hawaii's Health and Stranding Lab, said there were enough foreign objects in the opening of the whale's intestinal tract to block food.

“The presence of undigested fish and squid lends further evidence of a blockage," she said in a news release from the Hawaii Department of Land and Natural Resources.

The whale's stomach contained six hagfish traps, seven types of fishing net, two types of plastic bags, a light protector, fishing line and a float from a net. Researchers also found squid beaks, fish skeleton and remains of other prey in the whale's stomach.

It’s the first known case of a sperm whale in Hawaii waters ingesting discarded fishing gear, West said. The whale's stomach was so large West's team wasn't able to examine it completely. They suspect there was more material they weren't able to recover.

Researchers found nothing wrong with other organs they examined. They collected samples to screen for disease and conduct other follow-up tests. Sperm whales travel across thousands of miles in the ocean so it’s not clear where the debris came from.  Scientists say that more than 35 million tons (31.9 million metric tons) of plastic pollution is produced around Earth each year and about a quarter of that ends up around the water.

Marine debris harms numerous species.

Seabirds can ingest as much as 8% of their body weight in plastic. Endangered Hawaiian monk seals and green sea turtles can get caught in plastic nets and die. Sharks and other apex predators eat smaller fish that feed on microplastic, which can then endanger their own health.

In addition to eating plastics, large whales are harmed when they become entangled in fishing gear or other ropes in the ocean. The drag from debris can force whales to use more energy to swim and make it harder for them to eat, causing starvation.

On Tuesday, marine mammal responders freed a humpback whale that was caught in rope, a bundle of gear and two buoys off the Big Island.

Sperm whales are an endangered species found in deep oceans across the world. A 2021 report from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration estimated there were about 4,500 sperm whales in the waters around the Hawaiian Islands, from the Big Island in the south to Kure Atoll in the north.

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Rodents predicting weather trends. Why?

Just as fair a Groundhog Day question, though, is this: Why not? And more importantly, why should Punxsutawney Phil always get to, well, hog the press? This year seeing his shadow and predicting a longer winter.

The spring-heralding (or spring-delaying) small animal has taken firm root in some swaths of American culture. And while Phil and his Pennsylvania ilk are the most celebrated, there is an astonishingly broad selection of other critters who have felt the need (or, at least, their handlers have) to put reputations on the line to “predict” meteorology in the dead of winter.

Pause for a moment to remember one particular groundhog of yore — Charlotte, a stand-in for Staten Island Chuck in 2014. She predicted six more weeks before being famously dropped by then-New York City Mayor Bill DeBlasio and dying a week later.

The following is merely a smattering of groundhoggery, offered up in no particular order. Please don't be offended if your animal isn't included. Maybe next year.

JIMMY THE GROUNDHOG, Wisconsin: Caused controversy in 2015 after biting the mayor of Sun Prairie on the ear.

MILLTOWN MEL, New Jersey: Event got caught up in problems with state law this year after the previous prognosticator expired.

WOODY THE WOODCHUCK, Michigan: Emerged from a tiny green door in a small, human-made tree stump on Thursday.

WOODSTOCK WILLIE, Illinois. Saw his shadow Thursday. Site of where the best-ever PR around the day — the 1993 movie “Groundhog Day" — was filmed.

OCTORARO ORPHIE, Pennsylvania: Predicts from a home base in Quarryville in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. Because of Pennsylvania Dutch folklore, which helped give birth to the Groundhog Day tradition, that region has several on the job, including Mount Joy Minnie and Dover Doug.

STATEN ISLAND CHUCK, New York: Longtime predictor in the New York City borough. This year, the current mayor didn't attend.

BUCKEYE CHUCK, Ohio: Another Chuck, this one further inland. This year, according to reports, the Chuck used publicly was a stuffed one after an animal-rights group objected to how a live one had been treated.

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Read 280 times Last modified on Thursday, 02 February 2023 23:10
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