More than 1 million households give up their pets every year -- and it's not, by and large, because those animals aren't loved or wanted.
Our favorite pit bulls of 2015 are an incredible lot.
They've overcome abuse, they've cavorted with rock stars, they've worn pajamas and they've raised a whole lot of money to help others of their kind. These dogs are goofy and wonderful and inspiring. But, sadly,...
Teeny lived up to her name. The Chihuahua/corgi mix was so young and little when she was discovered as a stray in Northern Virginia, that she couldn't yet be spayed, and therefore couldn't be adopted.
But there was no reason Teeny had to wait out her growth...
Brunie Drumond brought home a blind, sick, elderly shelter dog in mid-December, not knowing if he'd make it to Christmas.
She hoped he would. She wanted to make it a good one for a sweet pup who'd never been given presents -- never even slept inside the...
Precious the dog lost her house to a fire two weeks ago.
A video showing her standing over her injured owner while firefighters battled the blaze went viral and became a symbol of a dog's loyalty.
But things took a sadder turn when Precious was...
It was a combination of luck and kindness that led to a joyous reunion between two dogs and the owner who'd been forced to give them up during a hospital stay.
We got you a present -- it's 35 pictures of pit bulls all dressed up for the holidays!
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The United States is a country of pet lovers -- and state lawmakers are taking notice.
More and more states are making animal cruelty a felony. States increasingly allow pets to be included in domestic violence protection orders. And as of this year, 19 states now forbid...
You are perhaps scared of bats. It's understandable; they get a lot of bad press. Plus, there's the whole Dracula thing.
In reality though, bats are very important to the environment. They are pollinators and...
Call them birds of a feather. One by one, the country's major restaurant chains are promising to use only cage-free eggs.
Just this year, McDonald's, Dunkin' Donuts, Taco Bell and others have made this eggsemplary commitment, responding to consumer demand for farm animals to be treated better.
If they gave awards for fantastic cat adoption ads, this one would take first place.
It's for a sweet cat named Jaws, who was picked up as a stray in Sydney, Australia, about two months ago.
Jaws is friendly, playful, loving -- and missing...
Rebecca Hardy was killed a little over a week ago. The young mother climbed into a neighbor's backyard, in Port Huron, Michigan, where she was attacked by two dogs -- one identified as a pit bull, the other as a pit bull/husky mix.
The medical examiner has,...
Once upon a time -- make that, in the winter of 2012 -- two Russian hunters discovered an orphaned, frostbitten Siberian tiger cub, starving and alone in the woods.
She was named Zolushka -- Russian for Cinderella -- and for the next year she was carefully nursed back to health, before being released into the wild.
Conservationists hoped Zolushka would find her prince -- or at least an acceptable mate -- and help replenish her species' desperately small population; just 500 or so strong, with even these at risk of being killed by poachers, and vulnerable to habitat loss.
This week, the International Fund for Animal Welfare announced Zolushka has been spotted with two cubs of her own.
“This is what we’ve all been hoping for," Masha Vorontsova, the IFAW's Russia director, said in a statement.
The twins are significant in multiple ways, beyond just their adorableness.
For one, they double the population of Siberian tigers in the Bastak Nature Reserve. They also show that rehabilitated Siberian tigers released into the wild can go on to successfully live and breed in the wild.
"It’s a fairy tale to see how far Zolushka has come from a frostbitten, malnourished cub to a thriving mother," Vorontsova told The Huffington Post in an email. "We were all jumping up and down in Moscow when we saw the images of those healthy cubs."
Get in touch with HuffPost's animal welfare editor at email@example.com
Turns out black dogs may not be as unlucky as we thought.
"Black dog syndrome" describes the ruff time that dark-colored doggies are thought to have have making it out of shelters and into homes.
This supposed phenomenon -- also known as "dog racism"...
If you're happy and you know it and you're a beluga whale, blow some underwater bubbles -- specifically, blowhole drips and mouth rings.
It turns out that beluga whales blow different kinds of underwater bubbles depending on their mood, according to a new study by
A young woman showed up at a drug recovery center in Manchester, New Hampshire, late last month with Curly, a small white dog. The woman was addicted to heroin and seeking treatment and although she'd been living on the streets, Curly looked well-groomed and well-loved -- leading Kriss Blevens, one of the center's founders, to wonder if he had been stolen.
Blevens spoke with police, local animal rescue groups and a vet who checked Curly for a microchip. When she realized Curly likely hadn't been stolen, she started thinking that this young woman must have found a way to do right by her dog, regardless of everything else she was facing.
Blevens is a makeup artist who lost her stepdaughter, Amber, to a heroin overdose last year. She has been tireless in her efforts to help others avoid the same fate -- a hard thing to do in a city where, as of September, 65 residents have died of heroin overdoses this year. The state as a whole is expected to see a record-setting 350-plus opioid-related deaths this year.
Blevens has joined forces with Hope for NH Recovery, a local drug recovery center, to build an emergency response center called Amber's Place. And once she met Curly, Blevens realized that helping her community's addicts will mean helping their animals as well.
"We're the place where they crawl in from off the streets when they are totally addicted and need help," Blevens told The Huffington Post. "We are the support system that helps them find their recovery."
"If you're willing to go to treatment," she added, "I will make sure your dog is OK."
Amber's Place is developing procedures for what to do when people arrive at the facility with animals. But it's not easy.
Blevens adopted her own dogs from shelters, but she is new to finding temporary foster homes for pets.
She needs help with funds as well. Blevens has been looking for donations to cover overnight staffing and other operational costs at Amber's Place. Now she's hoping to build a kennel for animals she expects to show up at the treatment facility while the city continues to battle its drug problems.
Director Shelly Greenglass estimates that 15 to 20 dogs belonging to heroin addicts have arrived at the shelter in the last year -- which amounts to about an extra month's worth of canine residents needing kennels, food and other resources.
Compounding the problem is that these dogs often still have legal owners, so they can't be put up for adoption. Blevens has found herself having to draft contracts specifying that the pets will go back to their original owners once the time comes.
"A couple of years ago, you had none of this," Greenglass said.
The Manchester Animal Shelter is now asking for donations, too, so they can properly care for these furry victims of Manchester's heroin epidemic. Not just for the animals' sake, either.
"You want the addicts to get help," Greenglass said. "Some aren't because they don't want to give up their animals."
Curly, for his part, is safe in a foster home now. So is a pit bull that came in last week.
Blevens thinks Amber, who loved animals, would be pleased.
"She was an incredible, loving, giving soul," Blevens said. "She took care of everybody else, furry and human, but couldn't take care of herself."
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Santa's adorable helpers here are shelter pets -- some of whom are still hoping for a great big Christmas miracle of their own.
Marni the dog, a canine celebrity who plays a starring role, is already spoken for -- as are most of the video's other pooches. But the three cats are still up for adoption through Salt Lake County Animal Services in Utah.
Spokesperson Callista Pearson says 9-year-old Magnum is purely nice -- while the two youngsters are perhaps a teeny bit more likely to get get some coal in their stockings.
Which, knowing cats, they'd probably just happily bat around like a toy, anyway.
"Snowball is under 1 year old and loves to play, and may get himself into trouble now and again. Fern is still a kitten and has her kitten antics but she loves to snuggle. She’s currently living in a foster home and gets along great with the cats and dogs in that home," Pearson said.
Find out more about adopting these sweeties on the Salt Lake County Animal Services Facebook page.
And if you feel inclined to share this video, that's helping shelter pets, too.
Gourmet pet food company Freshpet -- responsible for what's thankfully become an annual tradition, of videos featuring shelter pets doing funny things with what appear to be human hands -- will donate one meal for every share.
And here's a behind-the-scenes video, so you can see how this delightful, goofball production came to pass:
Get in touch with HuffPost's animal welfare editor at firstname.lastname@example.org.