Don’t let your dog park the car: Fido will forget 2 minutes later

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Hachiko greets his master at the station in a statue to be erected at the University of Tokyo next month to honor the world's most faithful dog on the 90th anniversary of the professor's death.

Hachiko greets his master at the station in a statue to be erected at the University of Tokyo next month to honor the world’s most faithful dog on the 90th anniversary of the professor’s death. Photo courtesy of the University of Tokyo.

If your dog goes berserk with joy every time you walk through the front door — even if you’ve been out of the house for only two minutes — there may be a very good reason for that, National Geographic notes.

He’s got a lousy memory — at least of certain events. Continue reading

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Rats got a bad rap for the Black Death, scientists say

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Researchers have thrown out the verdict against the rat, for centuries blamed as the primary carrier of the bubonic plague that struck Medieval Europe again and again with such ferocity.

The rat was wrongly accused, scientists report this week in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.  Continue reading

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There’s room in heaven for dogs, pope assures little boy

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Pope Francis blesses Asia, the guide dog of Italian radio journalist Alessandro Forlani. Photo by L’Osservatore Romano / Associated Press Read more at http://www.philly.com/philly/blogs/198635092.html#PeYuADtyC0JYHEpR.99

In his first meeting with the media as pope in March 2013, Francis made news by blessing Asia, the guide dog of Italian radio journalist Alessandro Forlani. Photo by L’Osservatore Romano / AP

Well, it wasn’t by accident that he chose the name Francis, the patron saint of animals.

During a papal audience in November, Pope Francis tried to comfort a boy whose dog had died, the New York Times reports, by telling him: “One day we will see our animals again in eternity of Christ. Paradise is open to all God’s creatures.” Continue reading

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Monkey makes human lose copyright, Wikipedia decides

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Self-portrait by a female crested black macaque; rotated and cropped by David Slater.

Self-portrait by a female crested black macaque; rotated and cropped by David Slater.

When a British photographer was taking pictures in Indonesia a few years ago, a “quite mischievous” crested black macaque grabbed a camera and shot hundreds of images.

Now David J. Slater has lost copyright of one of those selfies on Wikipedia precisely because he lost possession of the camera, the Telegraph reports. Continue reading

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Black bear crashes birthday party, eats cupcakes

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GlennMerillAndBrokenSkylightPhotoCourtesyofJuneauEmpireGlenn Merrill and his wife, who live on an Alaskan mountainside, were expecting guests for their son’s 1st birthday party to arrive any minute on Saturday when they heard a cracking of a skylight, not a knocking at the door.

“I was literally in the room, and I heard this cracking,”  Merrill tells the Juneau Empire. “And the next thing you know, there’s this bear that, I mean, literally, fell right from (the skylight). It was like three feet away from me” in the middle of the living room. Continue reading

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