Cruel ‘lucky bag of pets’ scheme sparks animal rights concerns
In China, animal rights groups are up in arms over a “reprehensible” trend of selling “lucky bags” of pets in the mail. While the practice of sending animals through China’s mail service is illegal, unscrupulous vendors are flouting the rules, selling animals for little more than a dollar. “Would you put a three-year-old child in a gift box?”, said Isobel Zhang, co-founder of the Chinese brand of ACTAsia, a British charity that promotes animal welfare throughout the Asia-Pacific region. The marketing gimmick allows consumers to choose the type of pet they want, but not the breed, color or size, so they get the thrill of a surprise when it arrives.  The practice has its origins in the Japane
Rare look at snow leopards in China
In China’s northwestern Qinghai province, a wild snow leopard was recently filmed in the Sanjiangyuan National Park. In the same nature reserve, a pair of cubs were seen waiting patiently for their mother to return with food. As winter arrives, the big cats have also been sighted in other locations including Gansu, Shaanxi and China’s southwestern Sichuan province.  
The strange, ridiculous and cruel dog ownership rules in China
From dog-walking bans to cash rewards for people who kill stray dogs, the attempt by grassroots community managers in China to control the country’s booming dog population is often at odds with the growing popularity of pet ownership. And despite complaints from non-pet owners, the central government appears ready to embrace a pet-friendly future. In April, China’s Ministry of Agriculture explicitly stated for the first time that dogs are “companions” and not “livestock.” But only 22% of households own a pet, a number that is expected to grow in the coming years, according to Alizila, a blog from Alibaba (which owns Inkstone). The growth of pet ownership creates teething issues in China as
Cuteness overload may make us better people
There is nothing quite like the guilt of diving down the rabbit hole, only to emerge a few hours later wondering where the time went.  But feel free to ignore that guilt when it comes to dog videos or clips of fluffy, adorable kittens on the internet.  It turns out there’s a rationale behind the addiction. A new study has found that watching such videos can lower your heart rate, blood pressure and anxiety — all health benefits we could use during the coronavirus pandemic.  The study took place in December 2019, involving 15 students who took part in a counter-intuitive exercise before exams at Britain’s University of Leeds.  Rather than doing any last-minute cramming, they watched slides a
Rare sighting of sea lion on China’s coast
A rare sighting of a Steller sea lion was reported at Dandong port on the coast of China’s northeastern province of Liaoning on July 13, 2020. The animals are usually more active in the northern Pacific Ocean, but several have recently been seen in China. Listed as “near threatened” by conservation groups, the creatures are the largest species in the sea lion family.  
Hong Kong says another dog has tested positive for the coronavirus
A second dog with an infected owner has caught the coronavirus, the Hong Kong government said on Thursday. But like the first dog that tested positive for the virus early this month, the 2-year-old German Shepherd showed no signs of the Covid-19 disease that has sickened more than 240,000 people worldwide, the city’s animal welfare authority said in a statement. “It is very likely that the two positive cases are examples of human-to-dog transmission,” Professor Malik Peiris, a leading public health virologist at the University of Hong Kong, who helped the government analyze the specimens, told the South China Morning Post. Peiris said that a blood test would be performed, but added the sampl
Rescuers are knocking down doors to save pets locked down and starving in Wuhan
Animal rescuers are racing against the clock to save thousands of pets left alone in the central city of Wuhan after a lockdown prevented their owners from returning to their homes. A vet working in Wuhan said his rescue group has saved more than 2,000 pets from around the city since January 23, when the city went into lockdown to prevent the spread of the coronavirus outbreak that has killed about 500 people worldwide. “The pets were found in homes with no food and water,” said the member of Wuhan Pet Life Online, who prefers to remain anonymous. “Their owners left their houses last month not expecting that they would not be able to return home. Pets are beginning to starve to death or die
China’s golden snub-nosed monkey on rebound
The number of endangered golden snub-nosed monkeys is on the rebound in central China, according to a recent census at the Shennongjia National Nature Reserve in Hubei province. Researchers found that over the past 15 years, the monkey population increased by 189 to 1,471 in the 80 square miles of habitat the animals occupy in the park.
‘Fire phoenix’ spotted in central China
They're as beautiful as peacocks. The brilliantly colored golden pheasants have been made a rare appearance in their snowy habitat in China’s central province of Henan. The reclusive bird, also known as the “fire phoenix” or Chinese pheasant, is a Class II protected species in China because their numbers have been decreasing.