Thursday, May 17, 2007

Dog Nurses Tiger Triplets at China Zoo

BEIJING (AP) -- It's a dog's life for three newborn tiger triplets in eastern China. The cubs, whom officials at the Jinan Paomaling Wild Animal World in Shandong province are so far just calling ''One,'' ''Two'' and ''Three,'' have been nursed by a dog since they were rejected by their tiger mother shortly after birth, said Paomaling manager Chen Yucai.

The trio's adoptive mother, a mixed breed farm dog called ''Huani,'' is expected to nurse them for about a month or until their appetites outpace her supply, Chen said.

Chen said it is common for Chinese zoos to use surrogate dog mothers to nurse rejected tiger cubs and that Huani has nursed tigers before.

In the past, Paomaling put dog urine on their rejected cub's fur to make the surrogate think she was nursing one of her own puppies but the zoo didn't bother with Huani because she seemed not to mind nursing the tigers, he said.

''The family is getting along well and seems to enjoy each other,'' Chen said.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Whole Foods Peanut Butter Chocolate Chunk cookies...and Mr. Brando Foster

This has become my habit when I'm feeling particularly stressed out: I go to Whole Foods, get a few minutes of a chair massage, and buy three or four enormous peanut butter chocolate chunk cookies to bring home, although I never plan to eat them all at once.

And here is what inevitably happens next: while distracted by Sula or Zephyr, I turn to discover that Mr. Brando Foster has devoured the entire stack of cookies. Usually he appears lounging, completely satisfied, on my bed, with the cookie sleeve somewhere near by. This, naturally, does nothing to aleviate my stress. In fact, the situation tends to spike at this point. Even though the series of events is entirely predictable--Brando always eats the cookies while I'm not looking.

Fortunately, Brando is enormous, so the quantity of chocolate is harmless to him.

The only concern is this: Don't they say that insanity is when someone repeats the same actions expecting a different result?

Zephyr and I just returned from a walk. You can guess what we found upon our return.