TIME animals

Nathan the Bloodhound Wins the National Dog Show for His Best Thanksgiving Ever

Nathan, Bloodhound (Best in Show, Hound Group Winner)
Nathan the bloodhound, winner of Best in Show at the 2014 National Dog Show Steve Donahue—SeeSporRun Photo

This is his biggest win yet

A 4-year-old bloodhound named Nathan took home the title of Best in Show at the 2014 National Dog Show on Thursday.

First, Nathan bested his fellow comrades in the hound category, then he beat out Freda the French bulldog and Bogey the samoyed to take home the top prize, PEOPLE reports. This is the biggest win so far for Nathan, who has been competing in dog shows since he was six months old.

But Nathan’s win wasn’t the only big news at this year’s show: another contestant — a miniature pinscher — escaped from its owner, dashing his chances at becoming a champion this time.

[PEOPLE]

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TIME animals

Watch a Slow-Motion Video of a Turkey on a Treadmill

No, it’s not running away from your fork

Animals on treadmills are having a moment today. But where “Munchkin the Teddy Bear” treads that moving belt in the name of cuteness, this turkey trots for science. Thomas Roberts, professor of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at Brown University, spends his days watching turkeys run on treadmills, as Chris Duffy writes for Digg, to help “scientists understand how to build more efficient robots, to understand neuromuscular disorders, and to design better prosthetics for humans.”

Turkeys, which can reach speeds faster than six miles per hour, work well as research subjects due to their size and anatomy. And if you shoot in black and white and slow down the footage, as Duffy did here, they almost look like something out of an abstract art house film.

Dr. Roberts recently appeared on Duffy’s podcast, You’re the Expert, in which a team of comedians attempts to guess, à la 20 questions, what a professor studies. In addition to Roberts (who, yes, to answer one comedian’s question, studies something that rhymes with “smiology”), the show has featured academics who study sand, fish noises and canine cognition.

Now, for the million-dollar question: Does Roberts eat turkey on Thanksgiving? He does. “I just don’t think about it,” he admits.

Listen to the full episode below:

TIME animals

Here’s a Shih Tzu Walking on a Treadmill in a Teddy Bear Costume

Add this video to your list of things to be thankful for.

Today in just because why not, here is a video of a shih tzu named Munchkin walking on a treadmill in a teddy bear costume. The world is a difficult place to live in, and that is why there are dogs like Munchkin and benevolent fairy dog parents who record them doing ridiculous (or ridiculously cute) things.

Munchkin is an established YouTube celebrity, as millions have watched her alias “Munchkin the Teddy Bear” exhibit her talent of looking cute in a teddy bear costume that makes her appear to be walking upright.

It’s been a rough week, tomorrow’s a holiday, the weather’s disgusting, and this video is only 30 seconds long. You’re welcome.

MORE:

This Poodle Will Stop At Nothing to Protect His Baby Sister From an Evil Blow Dryer

This Is Why Dogs Are Sloppier Drinkers Than Cats

TIME animals

This Is Why Dogs Are Sloppier Drinkers Than Cats

New research analyzes the physics behind their tongue movements

New research points to the scientific reason why dogs seem to be messier drinkers than cats.

While cats gently dip their tongues into the water’s surface, dogs thrust their tongues into water at an acceleration five times gravity, according to a presentation called “How Dogs Drink Water” at the American Physical Society’s Division of Fluid Dynamics Meeting this week.

To see it for yourself, here’s a slow-motion video of a cat drinking:

Compare that to a slow-motion video of a dog drinking:

While the researchers previously studied how cats drink, their latest presentation focused on dogs, using an underwater camera to map the surface area of their tongues that made contact while lapping up the liquid. In addition to finding that heavier dogs use more of their tongues to drink, they also discovered that dogs must open their mouths to capture the water they lift, further contributing to the splashes.

While it seems the research is just for fun, the scientists said their pet-centric work could in turn lead to deeper understandings of fluid dynamics.

[Discovery News]

TIME animals

Why Vultures Don’t Get Sick From Eating Rotten Meat

New study takes a closer look at how vultures can consume meat that other animals cannot

The rotten flesh of a vulture’s diet would sicken, if not kill, most animals of its size — so how do vultures manage to keep down meals of decaying meat?

Vultures have a digestive system that has evolved to destroy dangerous bacteria while tolerating other harmful toxins, according to a new study published Tuesday in Nature Communications. The research paints a clearer picture of how vultures’ strong stomach acid permits a diet of rotten carcasses, a fact that scientists have known for years.

Researchers specifically focused their study on the DNA of bacteria found in the vulture’s stomach, discovering that of the hundreds of bacteria present on the beak, only two dominated their guts, a “remarkably conserved low diversity of gut microbial flora,” the study said. Since the vultures’ gastrointestinal tracts are “extremely selective” in which bacteria they destroy, scientists believe their findings suggest that vultures evolved alongside their food sources.

“On one hand, vultures have developed an extremely tough digestive system, which simply acts to destroy the majority of the dangerous bacteria they ingest,” said University of Copenhagen microbiologist Michael Roggenbuck, one of the study’s authors, in a statement. “On the other hand, vultures also appear to have developed a tolerance toward some of the deadly bacteria — species that would kill other animals actively seem to flourish in the vulture lower intestine.”

TIME celebrities

Chris Hemsworth and His Wife Just Adopted a Puppy

Chris Hemsworth and Elsa Pataky attend the 3rd annual Sean Penn and Friends HELP HAITI HOME Gala benefiting presented by Giorgio Armani at Montage Beverly Hills on Jan. 11, 2014 in Beverly Hills.
Chris Hemsworth and Elsa Pataky attend the 3rd annual Sean Penn and Friends HELP HAITI HOME Gala benefiting presented by Giorgio Armani at Montage Beverly Hills on Jan. 11, 2014 in Beverly Hills. Kevin Mazur—Getty Images

The couple are parents to daughter India Rose, 2½, and twin boys Tristan and Sasha, 8 months

As if Chris Hemsworth could get any sexier.

PEOPLE’s reigning Sexiest Man Alive is now the dad to a puppy, supporting the, ahem, scientific theory that there is nothing more attractive than a hot guy and an adorable dog.

Wife Elsa Pataky announced the news on Instagram Monday, writing, “Our new family member.”

In addition to attempting to upstage Hemsworth’s cuteness, the canine addition can also count on plenty of playtime: The couple are parents to daughter India Rose, 2½, and twin boys Tristan and Sasha, 8 months.

When PEOPLE crowned Hemsworth, 31, Sexiest Man Alive, he said, “I think you’ve bought me a couple of weeks of bragging rights around the house. I can just say to [Pataky], ‘Now remember, this is what the people think, so I don’t need to do the dishes anymore, I don’t need to change nappies. I’m above that. I’ve made it now.’ “

However, we’d like to clarify: That title does not exempt him from taking the dog out.

This article originally appeared on People.com

TIME animals

Deep Water Shrimp Offer Evidence of Life on Inhospitable Planets

The tiny shrimp survive without sunlight and crawl within an inch of boiling hot waters

NASA scientists say that deep water shrimp, thriving in scorching hot water devoid of sunlight, could offer clues to how alien lifeforms might survive on a distant planet.

The tiny shrimp cluster around thermal vents, which are submerged 7,500 feet below the ocean’s surface and spew scorching hot water at temperatures reaching 750 degrees Fahrenheit. The blind shrimp can move within an inch of the hot water by using thermal receptors in the backs of their heads, and feed on hydrogen sulfide, a chemical that is normally toxic to organisms, but can be converted into energy with the help of specialized bacteria in the shrimp’s mouth and gills.

“It’s a remarkable symbiotic system,” says Max Coleman, senior research scientist at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory. “You go along the ocean bottom and there’s nothing, effectively, and then suddenly we get these hydrothermal vents and a massive ecosystem. It’s just literally teeming with life.”

Scientists believe the shrimp offer proof of how an organism might survive on an inhospitable planet, such as Europa, an icy moon orbiting Jupiter. Astronomers have found evidence of an ocean beneath the planet’s surface. With the right amount of thermal energy, researchers say, it too may be teeming with life.

TIME animals

Rare Deep-Sea Angler Fish Caught on Film

Meet the Black Seadevil

Scientists caught a rare glimpse of a elusive anglerfish in the ocean depths during a recent exploration.

The 9-centimeter long Black Seadevil, or Melanocetus, was caught on video in November by researchers at the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute in California, USA Today reports.

Bruce Robison, a senior scientist at the institute, believes the footage is the first time a living fish was filmed at its depth of 600 meters. Researchers were exploring the Monterey Canyon, a part of the Pacific Ocean that’s as large as the Grand Canyon.

“These are ambush predators,” Robison said of the fish, which has sharp teeth on the outside of its large jaw and uses a flashlight-like body part to attract prey.

[USA Today]

Read next: These Amazing Chemical Reactions Will Show You the True Beauty of Science

TIME Food & Drink

Sushi Restaurant Owners Plead Guilty to Serving Whale Meat

The Hump Restaurant is seen in Santa Mon
The Hump Restaurant is seen in Santa Monica, California on Wednesday, March 10, 2010. Gabriel Bouys —AFP/Getty Images

After the documentarians behind The Cove got footage of the crime

The owners of a defunct sushi restaurant pled guilty Tuesday to serving whale meat, more than four years after a documentary film crew captured the illicit meal on tape.

Brian Vidor, owner of The Hump restaurant in Santa Monica, California, and his parent company, Typhoon Restaurant Inc., agreed to pay a $27,500 fine for slicing up a serving of Sei whale, an endangered species protected by the Marine Mammal Protection Act, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Sushi chefs at the Hump unwittingly served the meat to undercover agents for the the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, U.S. Customs and Border Protection and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. The scene was captured on film by the documentarians behind The Cove, an Academy Award-winning expose of the dolphin meat trade.

[L.A. Times]

TIME viral

This Cat’s Laser Focus and Determination as He Flicks a Piece a Paper Is Commendable

After a full minute he finally takes a break and just cuddles up with it

This is Paper Cat. All we really know about him is that he’s really into paper — or at least, he’s really into this one specific piece of paper. He flicks at it with the type of curiosity and determination that teachers dream of. His human tries a few times to get him to stop, but he’s all, I have a mission and I will not rest until it is completed.

After about a minute, though, he does rest, cuddling up with the paper and making sure to protect it – probably because he plans to continue his mission in a few minutes.

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