Weekly News Roundup 4/13–4/19

Aggressive according to whom?

Residents of a Lexington, Kentucky, subdivision were notified recently that nearly a dozen dog breeds, including Pit bull terriers, Great Danes, and Siberian huskies were being banned. Homeowners in McConnell’s Trace were sent letters by the neighborhood developer detailing a change in an existing dog restriction, which previously referred only to unspecified “aggressive breeds,” said Josh McCurn, president of the area’s neighborhood association. Now German shepherd dogs, Saint Bernards, and Alaskan malamutes are among the list of 11 dog breeds restricted from the neighborhood.

Netflix or Petflix?

According to a new survey released by Netflix, 71% of their members prefer to binge watch television with their pets instead of people. Why? Because pets love to cuddle, they’re always down for one more episode, and they don’t hog the remote. And owners make binge-watching worth their pets’ while. Forty-seven percent say they will change where they’re sitting to make their pet more comfortable. And 31% have a separate Netflix account just for viewing shows with their pets.

Where did the idea of “crazy cat ladies” come from, anyway?

The crazy cat lady is a common, recognizable trope in contemporary culture: Think of Eleanor Abernathy in The Simpsons. After a promising career in medicine and law, she experiences burnout, starts drinking, and gets a cat. The next minute, she’s talking gibberish, looking disheveled, and throwing her army of felines around. But it turns out the stereotype’s been around for a while. To understand its origins, you need to go back to the middle ages and the earliest perceptions of women and their cats.

Some cats don’t need rescuing

As kittens, leopard cats (Prionailurus bengalensis) are tiny balls of fur who resemble a domestic kitten. The similarity recently fooled a man in southwest China’s Yunnan province. While working in hillside farmland, he spied a black-spotted kitten wandering alone. After spending three days trying to care for the kitten, he realized the species was no ordinary domestic cat. He has since turned it over to local police. But while the “rescue” may have been well intentioned, it may not have been a rescue at all.

Morris Animal Foundation, Smithsonian team up for wildlife veterinarian training program

To help cultivate the finest wildlife veterinarians of tomorrow, Morris Animal Foundation and the Smithsonian Global Health Program (SGHP) have collaborated to establish the Morris Animal Foundation and Dennis and Connie Keller Director of Training position at SGHP. The person appointed this role will be responsible for national and international training programs in wildlife veterinary medicine. Morris Animal Foundation will dedicate $700,000 over seven years to fund the position.


NEWStat Legislation & regulation Interesting/unusual