Today might be Hug a Bear Day, but if there's one rule you can count on while camping or hiking, it's that bears don't take kindly to embraces. In fact, if you encounter an adorable grizzly, polar, or kodiak while out on the trail, you should avoid eye contact and walk slowly away so as not to provoke or startle them. And even if you encounter a huggable-looking baby bear, get away while you can because his protective (and much larger) mother is undoubtedly nearby. Bear cubs sure are cute, though, so we thought we'd celebrate this unusual holiday with a roundup of cuddly ursine photos. And if you get the urge to give one a squeeze, please grab the nearest pal or teddy bear instead!
Recently, Lauren Conrad couldn't resist the big brown eyes of a puppy in need at her local animal shelter, and really, who could blame her? Puppies, kittens, and other young animals tend to be adopted first because they are just so darned cute. But this means that shelters often overflow with older animals who can make even better companions than their baby-faced counterparts. As the parent of a 14-year-old Jack Russell whom I raised from a pup, I can tell you that I look fondly on her wild and wacky days at the dog park, but I appreciate these last few golden years of mellow neighborhood walks and long afternoon naps.
November is Adopt a Senior Pet Month, so in honor of all the older ladies and gents who still need a loving home, I'm providing a handful of reasons why you should consider adopting an aging pal and a few ways you can make them feel right at home.
Source: Flickr user normanack
As we head into the waning months of 2012, it's easy to get caught up in the hullabaloo of the start of the holiday season. But rather than allowing it to be a stressful time for your pet, get him involved in the celebrations! Between Election Day flair, Movember mustaches, and Thanksgiving turkey, there are plenty of opportunities for your pet to represent this festive eleventh month.
If this year's Tompkins Square Park Halloween pet parade proved anything, it's that there are oodles of creative pet costume ideas out there. Who knows what you'll find when you turn a dark corner tonight . . . a Grinch? Spaghetti and meatballs? Mr. T? Google just released its list of the top 10 Halloween pet costume searches during the month of October, and while some are standby favorites, others might surprise you. In any event, at least you'll know what four-legged creatures to expect when things go bump in the night!
Source: Instagram User ecined
Adopt a Shelter Dog Month is not quite over, and Lauren Conrad is doing her part to help the abundance of pooches looking for love all across the country. Stopping by her local shelter last week, the style icon unexpectedly scooped up a friend for her other rescue pal, 4-year-old Chloe. Dubbed Fitz, the teeny pup seems to be getting along splendidly with his new family and living the good life, taking plenty of naps and even helping mom with the laundry.
Of course, there are plenty of adorable adult and senior dogs who need homes, too, so don't pass up a companion with a little gray on his nose. In the meantime, we can still gush over this aww-mazing pup!
Source: Instagram User laurenconrad
The adorable carrot-top Francois langur monkey born at the San Francisco Zoo just in time for the city's hometown Major League Baseball team's victorious run through the postseason finally has a name! Within minutes after the Giants completed their four-game sweep of the Detroit Tigers to win the World Series, the zoo announced the babe's new moniker, inspired by one of the outstanding members of the world champion team. Know what it is?
Source: San Francisco Zoo FacebookTake the Quiz
Not surprisingly, I've been a horse lover since my first pony ride at age 3, but while many little girls fall for the allure of elegant Arabian steeds or swift Thoroughbreds, my equine obsession has revolved around something a little less refined: the long-ear. I can horse around with just about any hoofed creature, but what warms my heart is a mule or donkey with a big personality and a little sass. So when I found out that today is National Mule Day, I couldn't help but round up a few photos of these saucy hybrids hamming it up for the camera. Care to learn a thing or two about these big-eared, big-hearted creatures? Just check out this slideshow.
Source: Instagram user tfenn20
Today, my precious pooch Lily turns a regal 14, and while I have plans to bake up some delicious and healthy homemade delights to celebrate my household's doggie doyenne, I can't help but drool over the beautiful pet delicacies offered on my favorite online marketplace, Etsy. So in honor of birthday pups everywhere, here are some safe-for-dogs eye (and tummy) candy for you to admire and for them to unapologetically devour!
Source: Flickr user prettyinprint
She may be only 2.5 weeks old, but the San Francisco Zoo's baby François langur monkey is already causing quite a stir. Born bright orange, François langurs eventually turn black, but this wee October-born one not only seems ready for trick-or-treating and spooky Halloween hijinks, but she has also arrived just in time — and in the perfect team colors — to root on her hometown's Major League Baseball team as they play for the World Series title. Heralded as the orange and black San Francisco Giants' rally monkey, her official name is still out for debate. But according to the zoo's Facebook page, the front-runners are Scutaro (for Giants second baseman and NLDS Most Valuable Player Marco Scutaro) and Posey (for Giants catcher and National League Comeback Player of the Year Buster Posey).
Of course, Detroit's mascot, the tiger, also carries favorable markings for the season, but as some have noted, these noble felines also wear Giants team colors, if you're the superstitious betting type! For more photos and a video of this adorable primate babe, just keep reading.
Even though you're probably familiar with the underwater dog images that took the Internet by storm earlier this year, the photographer of these wild and wacky pups, Seth Casteel, may not yet be a household name at your pad. But in fact, the pet portraitist has been on the photography scene for several years now, snapping endearing shots of pets for magazine covers and celebrity moms and dads. Yet it's the gleeful images of dogs plunging into swimming pools, chomping after their favorite toys, that have put Casteel on the map as one of this country's premier — and innovative — pet photographers.
We tapped the man behind the camera for his tips on how to take awesome action shots of your pet, so check out his pointers and some images from his new book, Underwater Dogs, available today!
Source: Underwater Dogs by Seth Casteel
Dressed-up dogs of all shapes and sizes descended on Tompkins Square Park in New York City over the weekend for the annual Halloween dog parade, the largest of its kind in the US. From early-bird Thanksgiving turkeys to (bummed) Yankees fans to Fifty Shades' brazen bondage bloke, these pooches covered the costume bases and gave us plenty of food for thought for disguising our own pets come Oct. 31. Check out our slideshow for 20 original ideas for getting your pups prepped for trick-or-treating!
All Hallows' Eve can be fun and games for humans and pets alike, but just like taking candy from strangers, Halloween activities still warrant pet parent supervision. We all know to keep pups out of the chocolate and kitty tails away from pumpkin candles, but what about some of the more obscure dangers? I'm not aiming to cause pet paranoia, but before you set out for trick-or-treating, think about how you'll address these nine Halloween hazards!
The queen of the 30-minute meal touched down in New York City today with a new food truck concept dishing out quick, tasty meals for your beloved pooch. Dubbed the Woof Wagon, today's Columbus Circle attraction aims to promote Rachael Ray's new line of super premium wet food called Nutrish Naturally Delish by serving up plates of Chicken Muttballs & Pasta, Hearty Beef Stew, and Chicken Paw Pie to culinarily minded canines. As much as I'd love to be there to check out the happy pooches digging into their gourmet meals, my pup probably couldn't partake (her 14-year-old tummy must stick to a limited, low-fat diet). But I wonder if Ray's NYC tour might inspire the launch of more pet food trucks coming to a fire hydrant near you. So I want to know:
First Lady Michelle Obama continues to field some tough questions from our readers, but she and husband President Barack Obama took a moment yesterday to pay tribute to our nation's Canine-in-Chief, Bo, on his fourth birthday.
While the famous Portuguese Water Dog played with friends on the White House's South Lawn, his powerful parents dished on Bo's bedtime habits and who lets him up on the couch!
Did you know that 53 percent of adult dogs and 55 percent of adult cats are considered overweight by their veterinarians? Our pets are there for us through thick and thin, so it's easy to think there's no harm in giving them one more treat. But as pet obesity can cause a myriad of health problems — think: osteoarthritis, type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, breathing problems, kidney disease, and shortened life expectancy — that cute belly pudge that your pet is carrying is no longer so, well, cute. The Association for Pet Obesity Prevention has proclaimed today National Pet Obesity Awareness Day, so in support of pups everywhere who need to lose a few, we're breaking down the organization's tips for helping pooches lose weight through walking.
Some folks believe that shelters only house big, high energy pooches, and while there are plenty of them to go around for people who like the extra activity, some homes can accommodate only pint-sized pups. If your apartment is the perfect sanctuary for a tiny tot, check out your local shelters and rescues before you call up the breeder. You'll be surprised at how many cute and compact canines are in need of an adoring family. It's Adopt a Shelter Pet Month, and while we encourage this practice year-round, here's a sampling of 10 lovable littles that you can find among the thousands of pets awaiting you on Petfinder.
Tim Burton's next adorably gruesome animated adventure, Frankenweenie, comes out in theaters today, and I'm totally smitten by Sparky, the pointy-nosed Bull Terrier so loved by little Victor that his buddy brings him back from the dead. He's, of course, adorable when alive, but he's almost more darling in his undead form with a few stitches and missing parts! Resurrected Sparky has now joined a long line of movie critters that aren't real . . . but I wish they were! Check out the others in this slideshow, and chime in with your favorites.
Last week, scientists in Japan released a study demonstrating that viewing images of cute critters can improve concentration. A paper titled "Power of Kawaii" describes experiments in which groups of university students were asked to perform tasks before and after looking at photos of puppies and kittens. Researchers report that "viewing cute images makes participants behave more deliberately and perform tasks with greater time and care."
You heard that right: all that time you spend on PetSugar actually helps you focus on completing the sales report for which your boss is impatiently tapping his toe. So go ahead and click through this slideshow of insanely adorable Instagram fuzzies without fear of wasting valuable time. It's now a work-related activity! You're very welcome.
We're fast approaching the spoooookiest time of year, which is a great time to have fun with your furry gremlin, ghoul, or chupacabra. But beyond tricks and treats, October brings adorable new animal film stars and pet photography sensations our way. Have a silly but safe month, and be sure to check out our October must haves!