TIME animals

‘Dead’ Cat Found Alive 5 Days After Being Buried

Bart the cat had been hit by a car

Bart the cat found out the hard way that there can be a little bit of lag time between your nine lives.

Several days ago, the black and white feline was hit by a car and pronounced dead shortly after. But he didn’t stay deceased for long, reports Fox13. Five days after burying Bart, the cat’s owner found him pawing around a neighbor’s yard.

The kitty was reunited with his family looking a little worse for wear, but very much alive, a discovery that Bart’s friends are still trying to understand.

“This doesn’t happen. Cats don’t come back to life, not five days after they’ve been put in the ground,” said Dusty Albritton, the neighbor who found Bart post-resurrection.

Doctors are baffled by the cat’s reappearance as well. Their best guess is that Bart was unconscious after being hit by the car, not dead, and miraculously dug his way out of the ground after being buried.

Bart is now at the vet receiving treatment for head trauma, a broken jaw and vision loss. While he has some serious injuries, doctors expect the kitty to make a full recovery.

This article originally appeared on People.com.

TIME animals

Watching This Very Large Puppy Learn About Ice Makes Winter Almost Worth It

Ice can be so confusing!

Meet Quinn, a five-month-old Bernese Mountain Dog who’s experiencing her first New England winter. A big part of the season, obviously, is ice. And, if you’re a dog, learning how it works and how to deal with it and how to successfully play on it.

Here is Quinn getting herself acquainted with a slippery frozen surface in pretty much the cutest way possible:

@QuinnTheBerner learning all about ice

A video posted by TJ Parker (@tjparker) on

And now here’s that again, but soundtracked with some music for dramatic effect:

See? Without hellish winter weather, cute things like this would not be possible.

TIME animals

Americans Could Spend $703 Million on Their Pets This Valentine’s Day

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Getty Images Dog wearing tiara

Nothing says "I love you" like a diamond collar

The candy and flowers industrial complex that is Valentine’s Day had gone to the dogs. Literally.

One in five Americans will take their pets into consideration on Feb. 14, according to a new study by the National Retail Federation, a trade association. Out of a total of $18.9 billion spent on the holiday, consumers will drop $703 million on their furrier companions, the group forecasts.

While the figure at first appears staggering, the retail group points out that consumers will just spend $5.28 on their pets on average.

But even though opting for heart-shaped Milkbones suffices, nothing says I love you like splurging for that diamond dog color Fluffy’s been eyeing.

TIME animals

Smartest Man Ever Teaches Pet Rabbit to Bring Him a Beer

Wallace the rabbit has his very own custom beverage cart

Man’s new best friend may be a rabbit.

In this video, a Brooklyn, N.Y.-based rabbit named Wallace—”Wallace the Mad King” on YouTube—delivers a beer to his owner’s boyfriend by pushing a cardboard “beer cart” containing a bottle of beer toward the man. As the user writes in the YouTube description, “I have been collaborating for the past year with my girlfriend’s pet rabbit to create performance art and ‘happenings’ that capture this rabbit’s capabilities and worldly passions.”

 

TIME animals

Honor the True Spirit of Valentine’s Day by Adopting a Cockroach in Your Ex’s Name

Revenge special

Feeling particularly spiteful as Valentine’s Day approaches? The San Francisco Zoo’s new fundraising campaign offers an opportunity to adopt a hairy scorpion or hissing cockroach in honor of your ex.

As the zoo describes the promotion:

Much like your low-life ex, they are usually found in and around low-elevation valleys where they dig elaborate burrows or “caves.” Also just like you-know-who, when a suitable victim wanders by, the scorpion grabs the doomed creature with its pinchers and stings the prey. After the prey is immobilized, the scorpion tears the carcass apart with its pinchers and begins feeding. Charming.

Donations support the San Francisco Zoological Society.

TIME animals

This Man Turned His Home Into a Purr-fect Playground for Cats

He calls it the House of Nekko, meaning cat in Japanese

A builder from Goleta, Calif., has spent the past two decades converting his house into a kitty playground.

Peter Cohen spent tens of thousands of dollars building an elaborate home filled with colorful catwalks, hideouts, ramps and tunnels for his 15 rescue cats, the Huffington Post reports.

“I never intended to have so many,” he told the website Catster in an interview last year. “It is way too expensive and a tad too much work.”

Despite the expense, Cohen and his roommate are happy that they’ve built a safe and fun, and also very bright, feline haven.

“They give us unconditional love, and building the catwalks is one way of expressing my gratitude for that,” he said.

[Huffington Post]

TIME animals

Millions of Genetically Modified Mosquitoes Could Be Released in Florida

Jason Garcia
Wilfredo Lee—AP Jason Garcia, a field inspector with the Florida Keys Mosquito Control District, tests a sprayer that could be used in the future to spray pesticides to control mosquitos in Key West, Fla., on Oct. 4, 2012

"This is essentially using a mosquito as a drug to cure disease"

Scientists could release millions of genetically modified mosquitoes in the Florida Keys in an attempt to kill off insects that spread the diseases dengue and chikungunya — if their proposal wins regulatory approval.

The male mosquitoes, created by British biotech firm Oxitec, are engineered to keep their partners from producing offspring when they mate in the wild, the Sun Sentinel reports. The number of mosquitoes capable of spreading the diseases would be reduced if enough wild mosquitoes mate with the genetically modified population.

“This is essentially using a mosquito as a drug to cure disease,” Michael Doyle, executive director of the Florida Keys Mosquito Control District, told the Sun Sentinel.

Despite the benefits of reducing incidences of dengue and chikungunya, two viral diseases that cause a number of uncomfortable conditions, many are wary about releasing genetically modified organisms into the wild. More than 130,000 people have signed a Change.org petition opposing the release of the mosquitoes in the Florida Keys.

[Sun Sentinel]

TIME animals

This Baby Beaver Snacking on Grapes Is Your Moment of Zen for Today

Snack time

Starting to feel bad about slacking on your New Year’s resolution to be healthy? Just watch this tiny beaver named Hazel quietly munch on some grapes in a video produced by Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium in Tacoma, Wash., and you’ll be persuaded to get back on track. Fruit seems to be a change of pace from beavers’ typical diet in the wild of bark and twigs. But Hazel’s clear love of grapes should inspire us all to ditch the junk food for a healthier choice.

TIME Videos

Go Nuts With These 7 Cute Videos for Squirrel Appreciation Day

Squirrel mania

One of life’s greatest ironies is that Squirrel Appreciation Day comes in the dead of winter when many squirrels are hibernating, which makes them harder to appreciate (but easier to juggle). Luckily we live in the age of the Internet and we can appreciate their adorable antics any time we want.

In honor of Squirrel Appreciation Day and the world’s fuzzy, nut-loving little friends, here are some of the funniest squirrel videos around:

While human children think merry-go-rounds are a blast, this squirrel has given up on his dream of resuming his normal life:

This squirrel is doing an impression of anyone who made the grave error of signing up for a pole dancing class:

This squirrel is either having a blast—or regretting ever decision it’s ever made to get to this point in its life:

Here’s a flying squirrel who mistook a bird feeder for an all-you-can-eat Sizzler buffet:

This squirrel ate some fermented pumpkins, which is basically a squirrel kegger:

Here’s a water-skiing squirrel, who has more skills than animals with opposable thumbs:

It’s hard to say who is more confused in this video—the Bernese Mountain dog or the squirrel trying to bury his nut in the dog’s fur:

 

TIME animals

This Orangutan Has Learned to Talk (Kind Of)

But don't worry, Rise of the Planet of the Apes isn't about to happen anytime soon

Researchers from Indianapolis Zoo and the University of Amsterdam have found that at least one orangutan living in captivity can produce sounds that qualify as “faux speech.”

The orangutan in question is 50-year-old Tilda, a Bornean female who resides at the Cologne Zoo in Germany. Researchers have discovered that she can produce consonant and vowel sounds in order to communicate with her keepers at feeding time, USA Today reports.

When she sees her keepers, Tilda claps her hands, emits a series of clicks or produces low guttural sounds. While the rapid sounds are unintelligible to humans, researchers were surprised to learn that the speechlike rhythms are deliberate.

“[It is] perhaps one of the best pieces of evidence thus far that great apes are capable of vocal learning, that is, that they exert sufficient control over all the elements of their vocal tract in sufficient degree to learn how to produce new calls from humans,” said Adriano Lameira, the study’s lead author.

Scientists now question what are the learning processes involved and whether other orangutans could master similar skills.

[USA Today]

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