Mulder is a clever cat. He’s not only figured out how to open a door, he works around a trap (a tray of water) to do it. This is why we went from latched doors to round knobs, although I suspect that bears had more to do with it than house cats. -via Daily Picks and Flicks, where you can see another video of Mulder’s cleverness.
How does a cat become a DJ? Practice! Although I think this one may be born to do it. There are training programs for kitten DJs, though, where they learn to scratch and mix. Here’s one session caught on video:
They are surely nightclub stars in the making! -via Metafilter
Hawks are tough birds, with razor sharp talons and beaks that tear through flesh with ease, but even these apex predators can have the tables turned on them by their prey- if that prey happens to be a four-foot-long bull snake.
Scott Adams happened upon a rare example of prey besting predator playing out in the middle of the road, and for some reason he felt inclined to get involved.
Scott demonstrates his snake wrangling skills in the video, and nearly gets nailed by the disgruntled snake despite his skills, which is why no one should ever attempt a rescue like this unless trained to handle snakes.
-Via San Francisco Globe
Although this avicular gentleman was impeccably dressed in a tuxedo, he did not have a reservation. Perhaps he hoped to bluff his way into a room at the Boulders Beach Lodge & Restaurant on the South African coast.
The staff politely but firmly shooed him out. Have better luck at the next hotel over, Mr. Penguin.
(Photo: Beate Sexton)
Pictured above is a maremma sheepdog with a stuffed bandicoot toy. Below is a real bandicoot photographed by Zoos Victoria in Australia. Wild bandicoots are greatly endangered due to attacks by foxes and feral cats. The zoo staff would like to enlarge the bandicoot population by training maremmas to live near bandicoot dens and protect them from predators.
Wildlife conservationists have already successfully used maremmas to protect an endangered penguin population. Zoos Victoria thinks that the same approach would be successful with these small marsupials. Oliver Milman writes for The Guardian:
The dogs, which like to work in pairs, will be sent to three different test sites in Victoria to see if they can effectively protect bandicoots without the need for fences. The spare Maremma puppy will be used by Zoos Victoria as a fundraising ambassador.
Maremma dogs are considered ideal for conservation work because they can bond to an array of other creatures while also viewing feral pests as mortal enemies. The dogs have formed friendships with sheep, goats, chickens and gannets in the past. In controlled experiments, sheep that heard dingo calls instinctively ran behind the dogs for protection.
-via Marginal Revolution
If there were olympic games in the animal kingdom, sloths would surely be gold medalists in all slacker and sleep-related activities. Case in point is Luigi the baby sloth, captured in this footage filmed at the Sloth Sanctuary in Costa Rica. A brief forehead massage has Luigi relaxed and ready to nap. He lets loose with a long, wide yawn. Let the games begin! Via Tastefully Offensive.
Meet crafty cocker spaniel Joe Cocker, who reminds me of my own counter-hijacking, cocker spaniel mix dog. From what I can gather, his Italian owner has to stay one step ahead of him if he wants to keep his food from becoming doggy treats. This upload to the YouTube channel of user Jonathan Iozza is titled "Joe Cocker: ladri si nasce," which translates to "thieves are born" in Italian (and is also the name of a 1997 Italian comedy film). Joe Cocker is smart enough to keep a lookout for authority figures as he attempts to steal what looks like a piece of toasted bread. Knowing how good the bread is in Italy, I'm not at all surprised at Joe's tenacity. Via Nothing to Do With Arbroath.
Perhaps sensing that World Lion Day is coming up on August 10th, lions Tau and Napoleon decided to speak up when their trainer, "lion whisperer" Kevin Richards, recorded a video. Richards' wildlife sanctuary is located about an hour northeast of Johannesburg, South Africa. Talk about putting the pressure on to prompt donations! Roar! Via Tastefully Offensive.
While everyone else was napping, these ambitious housecats set their sights on Senate seats, space exploration, and world domination.
1. The Cat That Started an International Incident
While serving as U.S. ambassador to India in 1962, John Kenneth Galbraith brought his family along on an official visit to Gujarat, where the governor of the Indian state presented Galbraith’s two sons with a pair of Siamese kittens. The boys named one Ahmedabad, after the city where the cats were born. Later that year, Galbraith’s wife, Catherine, told a story about the cat, using the kitten’s nickname, “Ahmed.”
What the family didn’t realize is that Ahmed is one of the many names of the prophet Muhammad. When the story appeared in the international edition of Time, it sparked outrage in Pakistan, where extremists were already fuming over American aid to Indian armed forces. The consulate was attacked, a jeep carrying Americans overturned, and mullahs decried U.S. insensitivity. Galbraith moved to avert the diplomatic crisis, starting with changing the cat’s name to Gujarat, but as he later wrote, “Amateurs will never understand how much can turn on the name of a kitten.”
2. The Cat in the British Cabinet
Cats have stalked the corridors of British government since the reign of Henry VIII, but few have gotten as much publicity as Humphrey, the first feline to be named chief government mouser. The black-and-white cat wandered into No. 10 Downing Street in 1989 and was quickly employed by the cabinet office. His winning personality and track record ensured his position under three successive prime ministers.
But like most political animals his appointment was not scandal-free; in 1994, Humphrey was blamed for the death of several baby robins. The cabinet office leaped to his defense, maintaining that Humphrey had been ill and “could not have caught anything even if it had been roast duck with orange sauce presented to him on a plate.” It took an official inquiry to clear his name. After eight years of service, Humphrey officially retired on November 13, 1997, but even this was not without intrigue. Despite his strong support within the Labour Party, the press speculated that he had been forced from his position by none other than Tony Blair’s wife, Cherie.
3. The Cat That Committed Wrenocide
You’ll never earn the nickname “Tibbles the Merciless” by wasting your days batting away at scratching posts and pieces of string. A highly efficient hunter, Tibbles is remembered as the most likely cause of extinction for an entire species, the Stephens Island wren—a small, flightless bird that thrived on New Zealand’s Stephens Island until humans and cats moved there in 1892. By 1894, 17 people and Tibbles were making their presence felt on the tiny, brush-covered rock, and before long, Tibbles was leaving her bird catches on doorsteps. Her victims found an eager admirer in David Lyall, an assistant lighthouse keeper with an interest in natural history. Lyall sent a specimen to New Zealand’s leading ornithologists, where the scientists were delighted to discover a new species so close to home.
The joy was short-lived, however. By the end of 1895, naturalists declared the Stephens Island wren extinct, thanks to Tibbles and a few of her furry brethren. The cleanup crew was not rewarded for its thoroughness. At the turn of the century, a bounty was offered for any cat on the island, and by 1925, the Stephens Island cat had gone the way of its flightless bird.
4. The Cat That Can See Russia From Its House
Internationally acclaimed wildlife photographer Marina Cano's work has a unique quality; the animals' camaraderie and vitality really shines. Their bonds are strikingly evident to the point of being moving. Cano, based in Cantabria, Spain, does the photo shoots in natural environments all over the world, often at national parks and on wildlife safaris.
Photos that appear to have a black background are achieved by shooting against man-made shelters built for the animals' refuge in times of inclement weather
See more of this series here. Visit Cano's website, 500px site and Facebook page to see much more of her work.
The folks at the U.S. Copyright Office don’t monkey around when it comes to enforcing copyright laws, but there’s one case that has them all scratching their heads- the case of the monkey selfie.
These selfies have created a bit of a conundrum over who owns the rights to the pics- David understandably claims he does, but Wikimedia Commons claims that the macaque actually owns the copyright to the photos.
Wikimedia refuses to take down the photo, which they've been distributing for free on their site, because the macaque hit the shutter button and therefore, in their eyes, owns the copyright.
What do you think- can a macaque own the rights to a photo, or does David retain all rights because it was his camera?
-Via Laughing Squid
Humans aren’t the only ones cheering about the new Marvel movie Guardians of the Galaxy, the raccoons of the world now have their own superheroic idol on the big screen, and their lives have been changed forever.
Suddenly raccoons around the world are walking a bit taller, they're no longer afraid to face the coyotes who have oppressed raccoonkind for centuries, and they're even adopting a bolder fashion sense to show the world how important they are
Ordinary raccoons may not get to travel across the galaxy in a starship, launch various explosive projectiles from a gun, or help save a universe full of non-raccoons, but just knowing there's a guy like Rocket Raccoon out there makes regular raccoon folks feel like royalty!
-Via The Soup
Michael the pygmy goat at My Petting Zoo in Cave Creek, Arizona had a crush on a sheep. It was a secret for a while, until his ewe girlfriend gave birth to a geep. Then the jig was up. Everyone forgave Michael his crossbreeding ways when Butterfly the geep was born. That much cuteness wins over any silly goat grudge all day long.
Butterfly was named after her black markings. She has the face and hooves of a goat, and the wool and fuzzy tail of a sheep. Her keeper Priscilla says she's active, friendly and smart. She is often featured on the zoo's Facebook page, as most stars are. Stop by and leave a message for smiling Butterfly (or to tell Michael you're not one to judge).
Images Credit: My Petting Zoo on Facebook
What do you do when you see a bear walking upright through your suburban neighborhood in New Jersey?
Ian Bohman grabbed his smart phone and start taping his stroll, because without the footage to prove it nobody would have believed what he saw!
The bear in the video is obviously just trying to fit in with the neighborhood by walking around like the people do, but is this a sign of things to come in the bear community?
Have bears figured out what those Yogi Bear cartoons taught us long ago, that a bear walking upright while wearing a trenchcoat and top hat is indistinguishable from a human?
Hopefully not, or we're in for a serious food shortage...
-Via 22 Words
Magical prankster Rahat Hussein is back with a new friend who likes monkeying around just as much as he does- a capuchin monkey who seems to be capable of driving himself to the drive-thru whenever he gets hungry.
What’s a monkey gotta do to get a hamburger in this town? Apparently pose for some pictures and entertain the friendly folks at the window who seem mighty happy to see him.
I guess you see enough crazy stuff after working the drive-thru window for a while that a monkey rolling up in his own car doesn’t even faze you!
-Via Tastefully Offensive
What do you get when you pet an armadillo (besides Hansen’s disease)? In this case, an enthusiastic new friend! Leandro Daher da Costa encountered an armadillo on the side of the road in Brazil. All it took was a little petting and the little fellow wants to follow da Costa home! After all, how much personal back scratching does an armadillo normally get? -via Daily Picks and Flicks
There's no shame is missing this year's San Diego Comic-Con because it had serious competition: Sesame Street conducted its first Numeric Con. All the Muppets and humans came together to share their love of numbers and cosplay as their favorite characters. The Fourth Doctor, Batman, Princess Leia, Beast, Wolverine, Captain Kirk, Princess Bubblegum, and Comic Book Guy all made appearances.
-via William Shatner
Richard Linklater's new film Boyhood follows one character over twelve years as he grows from ages six to eighteen, using the same actors over the entire filming process. The Pet Collective took that idea and ran with it, filming a kitten over twelve weeks to make a shot-by-shot parody of the movie trailer, which you can see here. Of course, Cathood doesn’t include puberty, but it does include facial hair. -via mental_floss
Jethro was the ring bearer at this wedding, so it only makes sense that he be in the group pictures of the wedding party. But Jethro is a dog, and his tuxedo is a bit itchy. There’s one in every crowd who won’t cooperate, and it’s usually the ring bearer, whether he’s a toddler or a dog. That makes for a headache for the wedding photographer, but a delight for the wedding videographer! After all, what’s more fun: posing for wedding pictures or rolling in the grass? -via Daily Picks and Flicks
Hello, yes this is doge....wait, this isn't a meme?!
This is Shiba the Shiba Inu, and Shiba just loves to greet customers that come to his master's neighborhood tobacco shop by opening the window for them and offering service with a smile.
Shiba enjoys working at the Shimada Cigarette Shop in the Musashi-Koganei railway station in Tokyo, but when all that window opening wears him down he takes a quick power nap, ready to jump into action when the next customer comes calling.
Customers must stop by the Shimada Shop every day just to visit the most adorable shop worker ever, sounds like a great reason to start smoking to me!
Just kidding kids, take after Shiba and buy a pack of gum and a magazine instead of a pack of smokes, that's one to grrrrr-ow on!
-Via Laughing Squid
If you have a cat, you know how they love to fit into confined spaces. But cats also like novelty. A cat may like a fancy expensive cat bed (or a cardboard box) for a day or two, and then they are off to find something new. That’s why this do-it-yourself project is the cat’s pajamas: they can have a different tent every day! All it takes is a couple of wire hangers, a cardboard base, and a t-shirt, which is not damanged and can easily be changed. Get step-by-step directions at Instructables. This is one of 26 Hacks That Will Make Any Cat Owner’s Life Easier from Buzzfeed.
Louie the poodle is a canine of refined tastes. No ordinary slop thrown into the bowl is good enough for him. The local humans cannot be trusted to cater to his tastes, so Louie himself mixes the dry and wet dog food into the proper combination.
Give this pooch a cooking show on the Food Network!
We’ve seen some videos here and there of dogs throwing their own ball to fetch, but can you think of a better place to do it than a boat ramp? The ball gets its own momentum, and the dog gets to swim, too, as long as he’s not in a big hurry to catch the ball. This dog’s got it all figured out! -via Tastefully Offensive