Month: June 2017

Paws for Thought | Your cat: Family pet or tiny tiger?

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Did you know that your cat exhibits many similar behaviours to its much larger cousins, like lions and tigers, and for very similar reasons?

Cats are crepuscular which means that they are most active during twilight, which is around dusk and just after dawn.

Wild cats will sleep between 16 and 20 hours per day with the male of the species sleeping longer than the females. So too does the family cat. Those many hours spent snoozing in the sun doesn’t mean that your cat is lazy or bored, it is just normal for a cat.

This behaviour stems from their ancestors who needed to conserve energy to catch their prey. If you think about a lion in the wild, it is most often photographed napping under a tree. When it is time to hunt they extend a huge amount of energy to catch, kill and eat their prey and then return to sleep. Your family cat naps for the same reason.

Much of the time they are not actually asleep but simply napping. This is a state where they are resting but still listening to what is going on around them. A napping cat’s ears will often twitch and move around like little radars listening out for potential danger whilst they snooze. Cats in the wild do the same thing.

Cats do sleep however this is usually for short periods and they switch back and forth between sleeping and napping.

Like their bigger cousins, domestic cats like to hunt but will often play with their captive rather than kill it. It is believed they do this because they don’t want the hunt to end and have never been taught how to kill.

Wild cats are taught survival skills like killing their prey by observing the behaviour of their parents, whilst your cat now has you.


Adopt Me! One-Eyed Cat Found Inside a Car Engine Is Looking for Love

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Home: Some pets never have one to call their own. We’d like to help change that by introducing you to an adoptable pet every week. Today, in honor of Adopt a Shelter Cat month, meet Fannie, a one-eyed kitty who earned her name through an unfortunate set of circumstances.

The 7-year-old cat, now in the care of the Michigan Cat Rescue, was caught inside a car’s engine, specifically under the fan belt — hence the name Fannie. She had been trying to stay warm, when a person heard her cries. It took a little teamwork, but people got together and took apart the engine, which set her free.

“Unfortunately her eye was punctured and damaged so badly it had to be removed,” says the rescue’s president and founder Nancy Hutchinson. “She was adopted once into a really nice home but her owner suffered a stroke and passed away so she has returned to us by a friend of the woman.”

Although Fannie is missing an eye, she’s just like any other cat. “She is a lap cat, she is very sweet, very friendly and loving,” Hutchinson says. “She likes to sit and look out of a window. She is quiet and gentle and loves to be around people.”

The rescue hopes it won’t be too long before Fannie’s luck changes. “We hope the right home will come along for her again,” Hutchinson adds. “She has had a tough life.”

If you think Fannie is the feline for you, fill out an adoption application on the Michigan Cat Rescue’s website. To learn more about the organization’s work and available cats, visit its Facebook page.

Holy sheep! India-China 1967 dispute may have been triggered by petty argument over animals

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The current India-China standoff over Doka La, a disputed territory between China and Bhutan, will hopefully not escalate further. But a similar border dispute between India and China over Sikkim in 1967 may have been triggered by something trivial.

According to a report in Hindustan Times, missing sheep and yaks may have been behind the conflict between India and China in 1967. The report says that besides allegations of territorial intrusions, a missing flock of 800 sheep and 59 yaks may have triggered the conflict.

Another India Today report says that after China complained of a herd of sheep being stolen in Sikkim, a group of Indian protesters — including then MP Atal Bihari Vajpayee — drove a herd of around 800 sheep to the Chinese Embassy on Shantipath in New Delhi.

Some of the protesters had even carried placards saying, “Eat me but save the world.”

A complaint from the ministry of foreign affairs (MFA) in Beijing to the Embassy of India in China on 26 September, 1965 described the protesters as “a mob of Indian hooligans”.

Even though the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) in India responded to the plaint saying that India knew nothing of the missing yaks and sheep, the dispute escalated and the military standoff took the lives of over 80 Indian soldiers and around 300 to 400 Chinese troops.

This is probably a good example of how a petty dispute can escalate into a deadly military conflict.

The worrying part is that China on Tuesday ruled out a compromise in the military standoff with India in Doka La, and put the onus on New Delhi to resolve the “grave” situation.

Chinese ambassador Luo Zhaohui said “the ball is in India’s court” and it was for the Indian government to decide what options could be on the table to resolve the standoff.

Asked about remarks by official Chinese media and think-tanks that the conflict can lead to a “war” if not handled properly, the ambassador told PTI: “There has been talk about this option, that option. It is up to your government policy (whether to exercise military option).”

The Chinese government is very clear that it wants peaceful resolution, he asserted, adding that the withdrawal of Indian troops from the area is a “pre-condition” to peace.