Winsol was born on the same day as the Winter Solstice, December 21, 2017, hence his strange name, and he hasn't left his mom's side since he was born, which is probably why he was so squirrely while he was being weighed.
Ship's cats have always been common, because they are the best way to exterminate rats and other vermin on long voyages. However, cats are just one of many types of pets taken on ocean travels throughout history. Sailors have been accompanied by dogs, pigs, chickens, rabbits, and other animals, and not all of them were for dinner. Patricia Sullivan, founder and curator of the online Museum of Maritime Pets, talked to Atlas Obscura about the little-known tradition of land animals at sea. They served in wartime and peace time, too.
Pets were also trusted companions for maritime explorers. “Many pets were working animals on exploration vessels,” Sullivan says, with dogs used for hunting at ports of call and cats on exterminator duty. More than all of this, seafaring animals played important emotional roles on long, grueling, monotonous, dangerous voyages plagued by uncertainty. “Sailors were out at sea for months or years at time, so pets were important de-stressors” she says. “I think people would have gone mad without something to pet.”
A few years ago, Sari Mäenpää, a curator at the Maritime Museum of Finland, was conducting research when she first really noticed the presence of pets in the museum’s image archives. “I came across loads of photos, especially from the sailing ship era, where cats and dogs were portrayed in ‘official’ crew photos, and suddenly I started seeing images of them everywhere.”
Wherever there are people there are dogs coexisting with human populations that are as diverse as they are, and whether they're trying to please their masters or snatch what they can while the humans aren't looking dogs will always be by our side.
So Alan started focusing his lens on the dogs of the world, shifting his focus from man to man's best friend, but before he shoots he really gets to know his subject:
The process involves getting familiar with the dog first, creating some kind of a bond and gaining their trust. "I find dogs are in general more consistently friendly, unpredictable, and amusing than humans," says Schaller. "Almost every dog I have photographed, unless the scenario has been tragic, has made me laugh at some point when meeting it."
There are thousands, if not millions, of pets sitting in pounds, shelters and rescue centers around the world, all of them just waiting for some kind humans to come and take them home.
It's important that as many pets as possible are adopted from pounds and shelters and given a better life, and to help expedite the process some pets have sadly taken to pretending to be purebreeds to make themselves look more adoptable.
But if you're going to adopt a pet don't be a breed snob, because mutts make awesome pets too!
Take Me Home is a short and sweet CG film by Nair Archawattana and students from the Academy Of Arts University, and it reminded me why I love mutts so much- because many of them have an indomitable spirit!
The Odd Cat Sanctuary in Massachusetts focuses on finding homes for odd cats: feral, disabled, neglected, elderly, or otherwise hard to place cats. They heard about Maya, a cat with a chromosomal abnormality that was headed for euthanasia at another shelter. Maya has a flattened snout and vision issues, but the more you look at her pictures, the cuter she becomes. The sanctuary placed Maya in a foster home, and now she has a forever home where she lives the life of a normal house cat and is quite pampered. Maya is also doing her part for other cats by being the unofficial face of the Odd Cat Sanctuary and drawing attention to other cats who need homes. See more Maya at her Instagram page.
Cats have a firm sense of private property, but it only pertains to themselves. A cat sees something, it will take something. "I found it, it's mine now!" You know, like the seagulls in Finding Nemo, just quieter. Enjoy this compilation of all kinds of cats taking all kinds of things for themselves. -via Tastefully Offensive
David Graham of Charleston, South Carolina, was simply trying to discard the Christmas tree. His plan was to dump it over the backyard fence into the woods. His wife Erin wondered why it was taking so long, so she peeked out the window and then had to grab her camera.
Their two dogs weren't making things easy at all! Did they consider it a game of tug-of-war? Or were they just upset that the wonderful tree was going away? I would bet the former, as the dogs seem to be having a great time. David, not so much. -via Tastefully Offensive
This picture was taken by Staff Sergeant Martin Riley of the Marine Corps in Korea. The image of a Marine feeding a two-week-old kitten with an eyedropper offered a tender moment in a brutal war, and was published in over 1,700 newspapers in 1953.
In the middle of the Korean War, this kitten found herself an orphan. Luckily, she found her way into the hands of Marine Sergeant Frank Praytor. He adopted the two-week-old kitten and gave her the name “Miss Hap” because, he explained, “she was born at the wrong place at the wrong time”.
Natasha's account is a sweet look at the friendly canine faces she sees at work every day, and since she hooks them up with a free doggie bagel they've stopped wanting to go for a walk and now want to go for a ride in the car- straight to the drive-thru!
This little ferret wants the dresser drawer open, and will not give up until it is! You have to wonder what's in there. Maybe it's ferret treats, but it could be something as simple as underwear to play with or a place to curl up and sleep.
A Russian fisherman named Roman Fyodorov has been making a splash online simply by sharing pics of his catches because they look like a prop from a sci-fi movie, and many of the fish he has caught are so rare few have ever seen them.
But therein lies the problem with Roman's Instagram shares- commenters claim many of the fish he catches are rare and endangered species, and they implore him to stop killing these fish for the sake of social media entertainment.
Other commenters have pointed out that Roman's fish look fake, but if they are props they're incredibly well made and that would make Roman a special fx wizard posing as a fisherman.
So as far as anyone can tell Roman's catches are real, revealing that there are some really strange fish swimming around in the Black Sea.
Reporter Alex Dunlop of the BBC was at Banham Zoo in Norfolk to tell viewers about the zoo's annual census. It became a bit difficult for him to stick to the script when lemurs began to show intense interest in the visitor.
They not only wanted to jump on him, they also wanted to get a taste! I considered it quite a show of professionalism when Dunlop called the leaping lemurs "little nippers" instead of something that would have been bleeped, but just a moment later they got the better of him. A man can only take so much. -via Metafilter
Horses are pretty hardy, but they're no dummies. It takes the two the exact same amount of time to figure out what's really awaiting them during playtime. Winter horse blankets can only do so much. -via Tastefully Offensive
An hourglass shape is only guaranteed by the supporting attire, as every bride is told by her fashion consultant. If you thought corgis were fat little dogs, this should set your mind to rest. They're not necessarily fat, just extra fluffy! And this little guy doesn't need a sweater to stay warm, he is just being fabulous and fashionable. Redditor Momzadork24 is a yarncrafter who loves dogs, so it's only appropriate that she would post this gem.
The Kitten Covers Tumblr seems to be defunct, since their last post is from May of 2016, but if you like the concept then it's definitely worthwhile to dig through their digital crates and see what you find!
Parts of the US are dealing with temperatures way beyond their comfort zone this winter. If your four-footed friend is used to going outside at regular intervals, you might be worried about his safety. Here's a handy chart from veterinarian Dr. Kim Smyth that may help you out.
Of course, there are some caveats. You can see those in blue. Wet weather and breed of dog can tip the scale one or more points in either direction. Acclimation to the cold is an important factor, too. For instance, dogs who are training for the Iditarod in Alaska are conditioned to be in the cold over time. If you took an average Husky and dropped it off on an icy tundra, he would likely perish. If your dog is acclimated to cold weather, like many hunting and working dogs, his number on the TACC scale is different than if he’s used to lying in a warm bed all winter like my dog.
There are other variables. If you have a dog sweater or coat and/or boots, that will help your pooch brave the short time he must be outside to do his business. Read more about pets and cold weather here. -via Lifehacker
You may have heard you're not supposed to flush your old medications down the toilet, and you may have heard that doing so is bad for the environment, but very few people seem to know exactly why it's so bad.
So here's one reason why you shouldn't flush your pills down the toilet, especially antidepressants- because they can end up in the ocean, thereby affecting the wildlife.
Researchers at Portland State University are studying how flushed antidepressants that end up in the ocean affect wildlife like Oregon shore crabs, and their tests revealed that fluoxetine had a dramatic effect on these crabs:
The authors introduced fluoxetine, the main ingredient in Prozac, into a laboratory body of water inhabited by Oregon shore crabs, or Hemigrapsus oregonensis. Normally, the crabs are nocturnal foragers, avoiding confrontation and hiding in sediment when predators appear.
After being exposed to the drug, the crabs exhibited a dramatic change in behavior. Instead of shying away from predators—in the lab study, the larger red rock crab—they became more confrontational, increasing the risk of an early death. They also became more active during the day and displayed aggression towards other crabs, engaging in fights.
a USGS study published earlier this year found antidepressants in the brains of fish living downstream from wastewater treatment plants. The study's authors warn that increased populations near coastal regions may worsen the issue. It's also unknown how concentrations of several different drugs can combine to alter behavior. Right now, it looks like our solution to one problem—depression—may have a host of ecological repercussions.
People usually say they want to see big animals like the elephants, big cats and gorillas when they go to the zoo, but when they get there they find the little critters like the meerkats are a lot more fun than the big beasts.
That's because smaller critters are more active and therefore more fun to watch, and if you're ever at the Symbio Wildlife Park in Sydney, Australia during feeding time you'll see a really funny sight- meerkats lining up and waiting patiently to get some food from Beth the zookeeper.
A couple of years ago, we learned how to trap a cat. Then, the trend was circular or hexagonal cat traps. But a family in Amsterdam experimented with a square cat trap. Will their cat Alvi fall for it?
Dachshunds seem like they'd be too discriminating and stuffy to dine with other common household pets, so a story about a Dachshund dining with a pet bird seems like pure poppycock.
But these dapper Dachshunds don't seem to mind sharing mealtime with the little yellow bird who shares their home, and the little bird seems like he's more worried about the dogs stealing his food than he is about the dogs eating him!
Would you have the nerve to try setting up a domino fall while your dog watches? I think I'd put the puppy outside, or at least in another room. The temptation to play is so strong! Haru the Shiba Inu can barely contain herself as her humans set up a thousand dominoes.
But Haru was a good dog most of the time, and she was rewarded with the honor of knocking down the first domino when the setup was all ready. You can see more of Haru at Instagram. -via Tastefully Offensive
Cats are carnivores. They mainly eat meat. But everyone has a story about a cat they knew who ate melons, or corn, or something else that cats normally don't eat. This kitten is one of those weird cats, but he's not alone!
Horse trainer Emma Massingale has a pony named Comet and a cat named Louis. They are good friends who go on adventures together. Louis doesn't need a saddle when he goes horseback riding; a horse blanket will do, but a saddle will do fine if that's what's on the horse. It's not like he could get his feet into the stirrups!
Humans who get jealous when their lover spends time with other humans are often dealing with issues of insecurity and abandonment, which is why they care so much that their significant other is spending time with someone else.
But you're taking your personal issues a bit too far if you get jealous of a pet, except when that pet is actively and aggressively trying to break the two of you up and steal your significant other.
No matter how crazy in love your pet becomes keep repeating these words to yourself- it's only a phase, they're just being a (insert species here), they don't live that long, it's probably all in your head...
Researchers sent down a robotic camera that captured the stunning footage of a Pacific sleeper shark, hammerhead sharks and silky sharks swimming around inside the acidic and super-heated environment like it's no big deal:
“Divers who have gotten close to the outer edge of the volcano have had to back away because of how hot it is or because they were getting mild skin burns from the acid water,” Phillips said. “These large animals are living in what you have to assume is much hotter and much more acidic water, and they’re just hanging out. It makes you question what type of extreme environment these animals are adapted to. What sort of changes have they undergone? Are there only certain animals that can withstand it?
Dragonflies are absolutely gorgeous insects, with vibrantly-colored bodies and magically iridescent wings that shimmer in the light, but did you know they start out as ugly little bugs called nymphs before they become beautiful?
Just kidding, dragonflies even look cool in their nymph stage, and as cool as it is to see a dragonfly up close it's even cooler to watch one transform from a plain-colored nymph to a colorful adult in this video from Beauty of Science:
This short film documented the magical transformation (metamorphosis) of a dragonfly from its nymph to an adult. All footages were captured with an iPhone 6s from May 25th 11pm to May 26th 7am. This transformation is a wonder of nature.
Tom has been gone for ten months. My guess is that he was away at school. When he finally returned home, the two family dogs got a bit excited to see him. You know the phrase "love you to death"? That's what this looks like, as they knock him down completely, and almost suffocate him with affection.
The Pet Collective has issued their retrospective of the best pet videos of 2017. These aren't just dogs and cats, either (although there are dogs and cats). Enjoy watching raccoons, foxes, geckos, hamsters, ferrets, birds, dragons, lions, and insects! There's even a wild animal or two thrown in for good measure