TIME animals

A Nursing Home for Dogs Is Opening in Japan

nursing home aeonpet group
Getty Images

The service is reportedly expected to cost $1,000 a month

A so-called “nursing home” for elderly dogs opens in Tokyo this month, The Telegraph and NBC News report.

The luxury retirement facility run by Aeon Pet, a subsidiary of the Japanese supermarket brand Aeon, is expected to start with 20 dogs, providing them access to a gym, swimming pool, and round-the-clock veterinary care. NBC News reports the cost will depend on dog size and breed, but is estimated to be $1,000 a month.

This concept may be considered a way to reduce the number of stray dogs that are killed. The Telegraph points out that there was a push in 2013 to make owners responsible for their pets until their deaths. “Elderly owners who are hospitalized may have no one to care for their pets and other owners may move to a new apartment that does not allow pets,” according to a Japan Times editorial published last year, which also argues some owners just do not realize how much care an animal needs long-term.

Aeon hopes to expand the concept nationwide.

(h/t The Week‘s Speed Reads)

MORE: Dogs-Only Swimming Pool in Spain

TIME animals

No One Loves Watching the World Cup More Than This Dog

Not even your quirky Brazilian neighbor or that one friend who all of a sudden loves soccer

Look, plenty of people are really excited about the World Cup, but their enthusiasm is NOTHING compared to this dog’s. His name is Georges (which is an incredible name for a dog, by the way) and according to his human, he’ll spend hours watching the games. He doesn’t even care who wins or loses — he just wants to soak it all in.

(h/t HyperVocal)

TIME World Cup

Animals Around the World Celebrate the 2014 World Cup

These animals are having a ball celebrating the opening of the 2014 World Cup—some predict match outcomes, others wear team colors and play with soccer balls

TIME animals

These Puppies Were Born With Green Fur

The breeders are calling them their “Hulk pups”

Two hunting dog breeders from Spain joked that their two tiny, green critters were “Hulk pups”—at least until they realized what might be causing their Granny Smith colored coats.

Daniel Valverde, a Spanish vet who is investigating the puppies’ fur, believes an exposure to biliverdin—a green bile pigment found in the placenta—may be to blame. That was the story behind a different green puppy who was born in the U.K. in 2012.

Though the pigmentation poses no known health risks, the two puppies were smaller and weaker than others in their litter. One died shortly after birth, which Valverde is also investigating.

Luckily, the surviving green puppy won’t be green for much longer. The condition resolves itself within weeks, and his green hue has already begun to fade, reported The Local, an English-language European news site.

TIME animals

This Video Shows What It’s Like to Come Face-to-Face With a Great White Shark

Yup, it's pretty scary

Ever wonder what it would feel like to encounter a shark head-on in open waters? This video, shot with a GoPro camera in Sydney Harbour, Australia, claims to capture that experience. The man wearing the camera jumps off a cliff into the water and within moments, his friend above warns him of a shark lurking nearby. We can only imagine that this began to play in his heart:


TIME animals

This Cheetah and Puppy Are Best Friends

Unlikely animal friendship of the week

At the San Diego Zoo Safari Park, a six-week-old cheetah named Ruuxa and a seven-week-old Rhodesian ridgeback puppy named Raina have been bonding since the cub’s mother abandoned it after birth.

“Because the cheetah was by himself and did not have any siblings we wanted him to have a companion immediately,” animal training manager Susie Ekard said in a statement. “They definitely like to play, and when they take naps together, they often will snuggle up together for that warmth and closeness.”

(h/t The Week‘s Speed Reads)

TIME animals

Service Dog Gets His Own Photo in the Middle School Yearbook

Right next to the girl he takes care of, who suffers from epileptic seizures

Pictured among the rows of uncomfortable smiles and gelled hairstyles in the Hector Garcia Middle School yearbook is one face that’s pretty surprising, because it belongs to a dog.

The pooch’s name is Taxi and for the past four years he’s been assisting 14-year-old Rachel Benke, who suffers from epileptic seizures, TODAY reports. She’s experienced them her whole life, and though corrective brain surgery at age six drastically reduced the frequency, she still experiences them once in a while.

Enter Taxi. He can predict when a seizure is coming — up to an hour and a half before it occurs — and then alert Benke’s family and teachers. He attends her San Antonio school with her every day, which is why Benke’s mom began to joke last year that he should get a spot in the yearbook.

Not only does Taxi dutifully attend school with Benke each day, though — he’s already saved her life twice by alerting her family members that Benke was on the brink of a seizure once in a pool and another time on a trampoline.

Still, the Benkes were surprised that Taxi’s yearbook debut got so much attention around the Internet.

“When I posted that picture, never in a million years would I have imagined that it would rise to this magnitude,” Benke’s mom, Teresa, told TODAY. “It’s been fun, and it’s been even more fun watching [Rachel] get excited about it. Three years ago this wouldn’t have even registered for her.”

TIME animals

Watch a Bee Heroically Save His Friend From an Attacking Spider

True heroism

It looked like the end for our good friend the bumble bee. He was trapped in a web, fighting for his life, and a huge spider was going in for the kill. Then, out of nowhere, his bumble bee brethren swooped in to attack the spider and save his friend.

The video was posted on YouTube by a British dad who says he was recording the event “to show my son who was asleep at the time sort of a brutal life lesson.”

(h/t: Daily of the Day)

TIME animals

This Rescued Bear Cub Is a Tiny Bundle of Pure Cuteness

Her name is Smudge, making her even cuter

It probably isn’t healthy for us to be so thoroughly obsessed with a bear cub, but here we are. This is Smudge, a four-month-old moon bear who was rescued from a bile farm in Nanning, China. Watch here as she does unfathomably adorable things like roll an apple around with her head and wiggle in delight while receiving a belly rub.

TIME animals

Researchers Search for ‘Mystery Sea Monster’ That Devoured Great White Shark

Scientists are baffled by what exactly it was that consumed a 9-foot great white

Shark attacks suddenly seem less scary.

When a 9 ft. long great white shark’s tracker washed up on a beach, scientists found that the data indicated that the shark underwent a 30-degree spike and a rapid 1,900 ft. dive. The temperature increase and underwater descent indicate that the shark had entered a larger animal’s digestive tract.

“When I was first told about the data that came back from the tag that was on the shark, I was absolutely blown away,” said filmmaker David Riggs in the Smithsonian’s Hunt for the Super Predator, which documents Australia’s first large scale great white tagging project. “What could kill a 3 m. great white?”

The documentary, which airs in the U.S. on June 25, chronicles the researchers’ attempt to understand what exactly happened to Alpha, the unlucky shark who had “a real swagger,” Riggs recalled.

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