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In 1924, Hidesaburō Ueno, a professor in the agriculture department at the University of Tokyo, took in Hachikō as a pet. During his owner’s life, Hachikō greeted him at the end of each day at the nearby Shibuya Station. The pair continued their daily routine until May 1925, when Professor Ueno did not return. The professor had suffered from a cerebral hemorrhage and died, never returning to the train station where Hachikō was waiting. Every day for the next nine years the golden brown Akita waited at Shibuya station.
She wouldn’t make eye contact. She didn’t react to heat or cold — or pain. The insertion of an IV needle elicited no reaction. She never cried. With a nurse holding her hands, she could stand and walk sideways on her toes, like a crab. She couldn’t talk, didn’t know how to nod yes or no. Once in a while she grunted. (…) Hard as it was to imagine, they doubted she had ever been taken out in the sun, sung to sleep, even hugged or held. She was fragile and beautiful, but whatever makes a person human seemed somehow missing.

CNN and the UK Telegraph have both reported that the dogs have been rescued since the footage aired, and are both receiving veterinary care; the more seriously wounded dog is at a clinic in the city of Mito, while the protective spaniel-type dog is receiving care at a shelter in the same town. (via Yahoo)

Ultimate Loyalty: Japanese Dog Refuses to Leave Injured Friend Behind (via LNeilB2)

Anjana the chimp Primate mum: Anjana the chimp helps zookeepers to care for orphaned puma cub, Sierra The chimpanzee, who is five, has lived her whole life at The Institute of Greatly Endangered and Rare Species (TIGERS) in South Carolina, in the U.S.. She learned to care for little big cats while in the charge of resident feline curator China York. Park director Dr Bhagavan Antle said: ‘Chimpanzees are great learners and imitators so it wasn’t long before she took on the right behaviours that were necessary to keep the kittens in line. (via I’ll be your mummy and you be my little kitty cat: Anjana the chimp shows off her parenting skills…with a puma cub | Mail Online)

Alors que je ne supporte guère les vidéos de chats mignons, celle-ci m’a tout de même bien interpelé. Mais c’est sans doute parce qu’en réalité il s’agit d’une vidéo de perroquet.

(via Lilysis)

Since it was published, the picture and story have gone viral, turning up on websites and TV shows and in newspapers around the world. For readers who’d like to know more, here’s what I learned as I interviewed the photographer, Monica Szczupider.

After a hunter killed her mother, Dorothy was sold as a “mascot” to an amusement park in Cameroon. For the next 25 years, she was tethered to the ground by a chain around her neck, taunted, teased, and taught to drink beer and smoke cigarettes for sport. In May 2000, Dorothy—obese from poor diet and lack of exercise—was rescued and relocated along with ten other primates.

The management at Sanaga-Yong opted to let Dorothy’s chimpanzee family witness her burial, so that perhaps they would understand, in their own capacity, that Dorothy would not return.

Some chimps displayed aggression while others barked in frustration, but perhaps the most stunning reaction was a recurring, almost tangible silence. If one knows chimpanzees, then one knows that [they] are not [usually] silent creatures.”

United in what appears to be deep and profound grief, a phalanx of more than a dozen chimpanzees stood in silence watching from behind the wire of their enclosure as the body of one of their own was wheeled past. Until recently, describing scenes like this in terms of human emotions such as ‘grief’ would have been dismissed by scientists as naive anthropomorphising. But a growing body of evidence suggests that ‘higher’ emotions - such as grieving for a loved one after death, and even a deep understanding of what death is - may not just be the preserve of our species. (via Is this haunting picture proof that chimps really DO grieve? | Mail Online )