animals

Japanese town’s Cat Street View lets you virtually tour its backstreets, meet feline residents

It’s an amazing age we live in, where you can fire up Google Street View and virtually walk the boulevards of many of the world’s cities. But it turns out Google Street View has a bit of a rival in Japan. Granted, its scope is far smaller than Google’s, given that it only covers part of one town, but it shows up the Internet giant by letting you wander its walkways from the perspective of an alley cat, and even provides profiles of all the neighborhood kitties you’ll meet along the way!

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Tanuki magically disguises self as cat to get food

Japanese raccoon dogs, or tanuki as they’re known over here, are animals with great significance in Japanese folk-lore. Among their many supernatural attributes such as giant scrota and swift speeds, the tanuki are also known for their purported shapeshifting abilities.

And though the above picture clearly dispels the size of their manhood, there appears to be some truth to their art of disguise. As the Twitter user who posted the photo explains, this little guy is actually pretending to be a stray cat so he can get some of the food laid out for him.

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Cosplay for pets! Dog fashion retailer selling Attack on Titan capes, uniforms

In recent years, it’s become increasingly popular for doting dog-owners in Japan to dress up their pets in little outfits when they head out for a walk. But since their canine companions are already equipped with a natural coat, all doggy fashion is really doggy cosplay, so why not dress your dog up like a member of the cast of smash-hit anime Attack on Titan?

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Clumsy canine can’t catch a break…or any of the treats being tossed to him 【Video】

Among the similar-sounding expressions that trip up foreigners trying to learn the Japanese language are kawaii, “cute,” and kawai sou, “I feel sorry for it.” This sometimes results in awkward moments when you see your friends’ cherub-like baby for the first time and animatedly declare, “Wow, that kid sure looks pathetic!”

But sometimes the line between kawaii and kawai sou gets a little blurred, like in the case of this comically klutzy canine.

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This cat looks hilariously like a sleeping anime character

There’s a lot of anime shorthand that, while perhaps a little hard for Westerners and non-nerds to decipher (just kidding, we love anime as much as the next guy), actually works really well to convey a scene’s mood once you understand the visual jargon.

One such shortcut we’ve talked about is the random spewing of blood from a character’s nose, which is used to represent lecherousness and lust, especially in male characters; probably because a comical boooiiing! and a sudden pants-ripping erection crowding out the rest of the screen is both a little too obvious, even for Japan.

Another is ubiquitously used to show a character sleeping and we’ll be damned if this real-life Japanese cat doesn’t nail it.

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Hedgehog nail clipping – The cutest form of pet grooming 【Video】

If you’re clumsy, near-sighted, or just timid in general, trimming your nails can be a tension-filled task. Each time you press down on the clippers, a split-second of panic flashes through your mind, as you hope against hope that the pinching edges are going to land on the nail, and not the soft, vulnerable flesh around it.

Being covered with needles, you’d think hedgehogs would be completely comfortable around sharp objects, but it turns out that some of them also find getting their nails trimmed to be a scary couple of minutes, like Japanese pet hedgehog Ebisumaru. But while the ordeal might be harrowing for him, it’s unbearably cute for the rest of us watching this video.

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Thousands of adorable chicks cover Chinese road after delivery truck overturns 【Photos】

Imagine you’re driving down a country road, when you see an overturned truck up ahead. Thankfully, no one appears to have been hurt in the accident, but the damaged vehicle is blocking the lane, and since it’s spilled its cargo all over the road, you’re probably in for a frustrating wait before you can continue on to your destination.

Not the most pleasant scenario, is it? Unless, of course, that cargo happens to be thousands of adorable baby chicks.

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Shiba Inu stuck in a bush is so cute you’ll soil yourself!【Photos】

Here at RocketNews24, adorable and fluffy Shiba Inu are kind of our thing. So when this little guy cropped up on Twitter, we just had to share. After all it’s not every day that dogs grow from shrubberies!

Japanese Twitter user @Yamamochi223 stumbled upon this cute hedge-dog and posted the pictures on Twitter, planting the seeds of a new internet star. Will it blossom into an international scent-sation? Read on to find out!

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Mesmerized kitty thinks something’s hiding inside the sofa, can’t keep his paws off it【Video】

In desperate need of a laugh? This little kitty is convinced that something’s hiding inside his owner’s sofa. Is the joke on him, or will we be the ones in for a surprise? Sit back and let this cat-being-a-cat tickle your funny bone!

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Animal cruelty on Mt. Fuji? We investigate horses in Japan’s tourist trade

A concerned reader recently contacted RocketNews24 with regard to what appears to be a case of animal cruelty on Mount Fuji. As animal lovers, we got right on the case and, while doing our research, found ourselves learning all about abuse issues related to horses and signs of neglect. Our research took us overseas to the U.S., where we sat down to interview a horse trainer who speaks candidly about the reasons animal cruelty is so hard to eliminate.

In this article, we address our reader’s concerns about horses being used to carry tourists from station to station on Mount Fuji. We’ll also learn about equine nutrition, exercise, and mental health.

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Young girl “hypnotizes” animals on Chinese TV show, we’re not entirely convinced 【Video】

A girl who recently appeared on Chinese variety show “Challenge the Impossible” (挑战不可能) demonstrated her ability to put a number of animals into a hypnotic state in front of a panel of hosts and a live studio audience.

During the segment, she performs her talent on a dog, a lizard, a frog, a chicken, and a rabbit. While it’s certainly adorable to see her in action, we’re not entirely convinced that she has a unique ability, especially in light of what happens in the middle of her demonstration.

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The perfect place for a Tokyo catnap? Under the statue of Japan’s most famous dog, of course!

Tokyo’s Shibuya is one of the busiest parts of one of the world’s busiest cities. Ginza is filled with high-class cafes, Harajuku is bordered by the tranquil Meiji Shrine, and Shinjuku’s Shinjuku Gyoen is a sprawling green space in the center of the city, but Shibuya is all glitzy entertainment, fashionable boutiques, and trendy restaurants.

But even in Shibuya, every now and then something happens that makes people stop in their tracks and take a moment to smile, like the sight of this adorable kitty taking a nap under the statue of Japan’s most famous pooch.

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Is Dragon Ball with sheep the greatest live-action anime adaptation ever? 【Video】

Even though the live-action Attack on Titan hasn’t rampaged to the same sort of success as its anime and manga versions, it can still pride itself on not being as universally and intensely panned as Dragonball Evolution. The attempt to recreate Akira Toriyama’s phenomenally successful martial arts saga with real people confused and bored audiences who couldn’t care less about the anime it was based on, and simultaneously angered existing fans for not even being faithful enough to its source material to write Dragonball as two words.

But it’s been six years since Dragonball Evolution made its theatrical debut. Maybe it’s time for someone to try making a live-action Dragon Ball again, and maybe this time he should make it with sheep.

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Japan gets a new stationmaster cat as Nitama is officially named successor to the departed Tama

It was a sad day for cat lovers and train fans alike when Tama, the cute calico that had served as stationmaster of Kishi Station in Wakayama Prefecture since 2007, recently passed away. Heartbroken as Tama’s many supporters were, though, life goes on, and Wakayama Electric Railway has announced that Kishi now has a new feline stationmaster, as Tama’s understudy, Nitama, has officially taken over the position.

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Chinese monkey steals fruit, vegetables and…kittens?!

Being closely related to humans, monkeys are quite clever. Heck, some of them seem to have even figured out how to use smartphones. But sometimes those brains go into being sneaky critters who are known to steal food from tourists in broad daylight!

One little monkey in China has been stealing more than food though, as he kidnapped a kitten and has been raising it as its own.

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The Maasai people teach us how to kill a lion, demonstrate on our writer

Sure, you may have killed, like, 230 lions in Skyrim and traded in their pelts for a sweet dagger and maybe a cool tricorn hat, but it’s safe to say that, in real life, you probably wouldn’t fare so well against one of nature’s most efficient predators. First, where are you going to get a sweet set of gold armor and a giant warhammer? Secondly, humankind’s fight or flight response being what it is, you’re probably far more likely to projectile urinate onto your attacker while fleeing at top speed like the damn Roadrunner or something.

No, outside of Skyrim, there is only really one group of people (that don’t routinely use high-powered, modern weapons like they’re hunting the Predator) that can actually boast of taking on lions and walking away not only alive but victorious. Lucky for us, we’re tight with these folks – the Maasai people of Kenya and Tanzania – and they graciously taught us their technique, using one of our most unfortunate Japanese writing staff to demonstrate.

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Sometimes, the best cat toy is another cat 【Videos】

If you’re a cat owner, you’ve probably bought a few toys for your pet to play with. But actually, your feline housemate might not need that ball of yarn or radio-controlled mouse, since it turns out that sometimes the best cat toy is another cat.

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A cat, a straw hat, and a truck turn out to be a perfectly adorable summer combination 【Video】

Summer has always been my favorite season, and I’m positive the original reason was the generous, three-month summer vacation of the American school system. Yet even as a legal adult, with work responsibilities that continue nonstop for all 12 months, this is still my favorite time of year.

Every now and then, I’ll catch a perfect moment of soothing, oven-warm calm, and in that instant, I don’t have a care in the world. There’s a certain contentedness that can only come from a quiet summer afternoon, and it looks like it affects cats as well as humans, as this adorable kitty in Kagoshima Prefecture shows.

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World’s smallest “hopping mouse” could fit into your pocket’s pocket

What would you do if you suddenly saw a tiny little fur ball jump across the road in front of your car in the middle of a country road? Could you stop in time? We’re not talking about some normal rodent either, but an adorably cute fuzzy critter only as big as a plastic bottle cap.

Learn all about this adorable creature that narrowly avoided being hit by a car in China with pictures and more, after the jump!

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Japanese kitty doesn’t seem to grasp the difference between shaking hands and boxing 【Video】

About a month ago, we had the chance to shake hands with an otter, and it was adorable. As the little guy gently laid his hand in ours, a sense of calm came over us, and given how relaxed he was through the whole affair, he seemed to be in good spirits, too.

But not every animal grasps the finer points of this human greeting, as shown by this video of a cat owner in Japan looking for a handshake, and finding out that her pet has a lightning-fast left hook.

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