Pictured: Short-beaked echidna & skeleton.
The short-beaked echidna (Tachyglossus aculeatus) is one of four living species of echidna and the only member of the genus Tachyglossus. It is covered in fur and spines and has a distinctive snout and a specialized tongue which it uses to catch its prey at a great speed. It can eat quickly; a specimen of around 3 kg (6.6 lb) can ingest 200 g (7.1 oz) of termites in 10 minutes. Like the other extant monotremes, the short-beaked echidna lays eggs; the monotremes are the only group of mammals to do so.
This echidna has extremely strong front limbs and claws due to its mechanical advantage which allows it to burrow quickly with great power. As it needs to be able to survive underground it has a significant tolerance to high levels of carbon dioxide and low levels of oxygen. It has no weapons or fighting ability but repels predators by curling into a ball and deterring them with its spines.
Female echidnas lay one egg a year and the mating period is the only time the otherwise solitary animals meet one another. A young echidna is the size of a grape but grows rapidly on its mother’s milk, which is very rich in nutrients. Baby echidnas eventually grow too large and spiky to stay in the pouch and, at around six months of age, they leave the burrow on their own.
The species is found throughout Australia, where it is the most widespread native mammal, and in coastal and highland regions of southwestern New Guinea, where it is known as the mungwe in the Daribi and Chimbu languages.
This now my favourite gif
Alaskan Brown Bear (Ursus arctos alascensis)
God dang, I really like this picture because you rarely get a sense for how LEGGY grizzly bears are. They seem so short and stocky under all that fur it’s easy to forget that they have these long powerful legs and those deep chests and can actually run as fast as a horse. They have a remarkable strength and presence.
Steve Hinch photographed this little grizzly bear cub who found a clever way to keep his little paws from getting cold while his mum hunted for food in the freezing snow in Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming. The months old youngster hitched a ride on his mother’s back, clinging on tightly to keep his paws off the ground and would only come down to grab a bite to eat.
Let’s start off with this comical image. Pugs are so desirable now, they are being overbred on a destructive scale. They suffer enormously as a result of human ideals of ‘cute’. So, before you upvote another pug picture, please read this…
This is the Pug’s skull. Pretty horrible, right? I mean, just look at the jaws. Pugs even have their own disease, PDE (Pug Dog encephalitis). The skull is so small the brain does not fit inside, causing the dog fits, dementia, constant migraine, blindness and involuntary physical movements (like running in circles).
This is the average Pug jaw on the inside. Pugs need a lot of tooth extractions because their mouths are so mangled.
The Pug’s main health issue is with breathing. The Pug’s signature look is the flat face, which means the dog’s airways are squashed in the skull. It also means they cannot lose heat effectively (we all know dogs cool through panting, imagine having no snout to pant through?)
Here is a healthy Labrador, just to compare the nasal cavities. Pugs often need surgery just to breathe properly. Bone and other flesh is cut from the skull to open up the airways. There are also many clips of ‘cute’ dogs falling asleep upright on youtube. This is because if they dropped their head, their airways collapse and they would suffocate.
Eye prolapse is also shockingly common. Pugs usually cannot be controlled via regular collars, the pressure of pulling on the lead would lead either to collapse of the oesophagus or the eyes to pop out. This is why you usually see Pugs in harnesses.
Here are healthier long nosed Pugs. These do not suffer so greatly due to human induced selective breeding. So PLEASE, do not advocate the suffering of these poor innocent animals by making them so popular. If you choose to buy a dog of any pedigree (check your local shelter first!) make sure you do thorough research, check the pup’s papers. Good breeders will scan their pups for genetic disorders. Dogs are for life, not just for looks!
This is actually really horrible and this is the reason pugs make me so uncomfortable, even as a dog lover—it’s not cause of how they look but imagining what people did to them over the years to make them look this way. And imagining us enjoying it. I mean I always knew it was unnatural, but…after this post I SERIOUSLY feel bad for pugs, and more creeped out by humans than anything else.
Please everyone who does consider getting a pug; look into breeders that breed the ‘old pug’ type with the longer noses. I can not stress enough how disabling the short, squished-in snout to a dog is.
It really makes me cringe when pug owners say how ‘cute’ they find the awkward noises their pug makes when breathing. It’s not cute, it’s just really sad.
My dog (GSD/whippet mix) played with someone’s pug once, and out of no-where, the pug screamed and attacked mine, and Monobi (my dog) was really taken aback and didn’t know why he was attacked now. Turned out that during play he must have scraped Marie’s (name of the pug) eye wither with his claws or teeth, since she was frantically blinking and teardrops came out of it (sign of the skin of the eye being damaged) - as pug eyes stand out of the skull totally unprotected, this exaggerated skull even makes PLAYING a dangerous task for them.
The very same could be applied to any breed @ do your research and do not get exaggerated breeds.
Another fine example is the German Shepherd; do not get a GSD with a so called banana-back - it causes the dog discomfort and is often at blame for severe hip problems in your dog.
Check your typical show-line GSD vs working line GSD
You do not want to get a dog that has been bred in exaggerated shapes. You will regret making that decission once the vet bills keep piling up and - more importantly - once you figure your dog suffers extremily, perhaps even to the point where you will have to get it put down to end the suffering.
Please also watch this video:
It’s a 2-minute cut-out of a 1 hour documentary called “Pedigree Dogs Exposed” (and I DO recommend watching the full thing)
This is a very important post. As a (part-time) dog breeder, I have major issues with Tumblr’s “cute disease” and its obsession with pugs (who I find revolting and sad) but you’ve probably heard me rant about that.
You need to educate yourself about which dog you’re getting in every respect. Every dog is different, and every dog needs special care and attention. There is not one breed you can just treat “like any dog.”
I was just talking about this in pugs! Of course, I talked about it at 3 AM, which I am doing again right now, but this is 100% the truth.
The consequence of this kind of breeding in the German Shepherd Dog and other working breeds (needle noses on collies, etc.) is an especially personal issue to me, and I will not stop talking about it because it matters.