A baby chihuahua born with a heart-shaped pattern on his coat has become a hit in Japan.
The chihuahua has a white coat with a tan colored patch of fur in the shape of a nearly perfect heart that many onlookers now seem to feel is lucky.
According to owner Emiko Sakurada, who breeds chihuahuas, this is the first of roughly 1,000 dogs to exhibit this type of marking.
She has chosen the name of “Heartkun” for the prized pup, born in Northern Japan and soon to be famous throughout the world.
Spectators as well as the media have been mobbing the young dog, hoping for a chance to touch the dog, as it is believed to rub off some good luck.
This dog gives a new meaning to the phrase, “wearing your heart on your sleeve”.
A farm in Buckfastleigh, Devon, England has stumbled upon a novel idea to raise funds for their Farm Crisis Network charity.
The farm has enlisted the help of two piglets, known as “Van Snout” and “Bottabelli” who one day accidentally got into a few cans of non-toxic paint, and the next day had become artists.
Their work is comparable to a Jackson Pollock painting for its messy and loose design, and wild mix of colors.
Farm owner Chris Murray said “The pigs tended to go more for pointilism – they weren’t too keen on cubism. We think of them as our little Pigassos.”
The paintings sell for up to £16 each and have raised more than £150 so far, which is sure to grow once the news spreads.
The quality of the paintings is actually quite good, so good that you may be surprised to see who the true artists are behind the works.
The first panda born in captivity and released in the wild was found dead on February 19 in the forests of Sichuan province.
According to officials, the giant panda likely fell from a high place, perhaps a tree as it was being chased by other wild pandas.
“We are all sad about Xiang Xiang, but it doesn’t mean the project has failed,” said Zhang Hemin, the Wolong Giant Panda Research Center head. “The lessons we have learnt from what happened to Xiang Xiang will help us adapt and improve the project.”
The panda was released from Wolong in April 2006, surviving less than a year in the wild after three years of training and preparation where he learned to howl, bite, forage for food, build a den, and other survival essentials.
Unfortunately he didn’t seem to mix well with other wild pandas, and subsequently failed to survive amongst them.
“We chose Xiang Xiang because we thought that a strong male panda would have a better chance of surviving in the harsh natural environment,” Li was quoted as saying. “But the other male pandas clearly saw Xiang Xiang as a threat. Next time we will choose a female panda.”
Experts estimate that there are only about 1,600 wild pandas in the world, which all live in the mountain forests of central China, along with 180 other pandas living in captivity.
Xiang Xiang has been buried at the base of a mountain nearby the research center.
Photo courtesy LI WEI / CHINA FOTO PRESS / GAMMA
Pictured above is Smash, a Japanese-born French Poodle who won the annual World Dog Show in Mexico City. His owner is Mamoro Oyama of Japan
The poodle beat out some 5,000 competitors from around the globe, including 300 different dog breeds.
A male Bulldog came in second place, and third place went to a bulldog, while the third place went to a male Xoloitzcuintle, described as a hairless Mexican breed also known as Xolo. Both dogs have Mexican owners.
Owners spent hours grooming and preparing the dogs, and spent thousands of dollars investing in their lives to get them to this level.
“In the long run we might not recoup the investment, but if they are well-ranked in these competitions, the quality of the dog is certified and the price of its mating and offspring rises,” said Mr. Trejo, a Venezuelan engineer who raises dogs part time as a hobby.
Above is a picture of one of the hotel guests at the Kennel1 in New Delhi, India. For about 250 Rupees a day ($6), dogs can enjoy air-conditioned rooms, top of the line cuisine, a crystal-clear pool, and a lounge.
“This is a place where your dog can come and live in style,” said Shailendra Uniyal, the hotel’s owner.
Pet owners may also make special demands for their pet, such as what they can eat, how their food should be prepared, what type of bed they should sleep on, and more. It’s truly the lap of luxury for these dogs.