This is just sort of bizarre and really unexpected. But still, totally endearing. Definitely not what one thinks of as "adorable" when it comes to animal videos. And yet -- it is.
As one person responded online, "We are NOT all meant to be “service dogs.” But if people let us.. we will, all, figure out what we are good at."
The additional fun here is watching the reaction of the trainer go from bemused to accepting the calamitous effort with total enjoyment.
I don't know if this is pure coincidence, or training, or totally unrelated to what the subject heading is, or the real thing. But it sure is funny, whatever.
Timing suggests the former or latter. But again, it almost doesn't matter. It's just fun.
I don't think that I would particularly describe this as "calm and serene," but more probably as a dog observing everything around him and deciding to just have "pure, adulterated fun."
As I recharge my batteries before heading back in to CES for the second day, I thought I'd post this bizarrely funny video to properly pass the time. I'll have the day's tech report posted later in the day.
This is just really totally unexpected and a hoot -- made all the funnier by the wonderful comment by the person posting it --
Okay, this isn't exactly an "Adorable" animal video, that's just the recognizable heading I use for all these these. Actually, it's a Truly Remarkable Animal Video.
No backstory is needed, the video of what's happening is clear. But remarkable as it is, it's just the surface, knowing the backstory puts it in full perspective that makes it all the more wonderful and far richer. This is from 2010 -- the Alaska State Trooper Terrence Shanigan was response to a distress call for a file when his GPS froze up and he got disoriented in the dark amid the twisting roads in the middle of nowhere. That's when he came across a dog in the road, sitting and waiting on the left side. This being Alaska, Shanigan was an experienced dog sledder, and he recognized that the German Shepherd was trying to lead him. The owner of the workshop on fire, Ben Heinrichs, suffered burns to his hand, but no more than that. And he told reporters later that this wasn't the first time his dog Buddy had saved him, having fought off bears before.
But the story is even better. Buddy then ran back to where he'd been waiting before -- and Trooper Shanigan had the presence of mind to call the fire department to tell them that if they saw a German Shepherd in the road not to ignore it but follow it to the fire.
If you want a bit more, here's a well-produced 6-minute report done on the story, featuring Trooper Shanigan, as well as Ben Henrichs. And Buddy, of course. It's from a British TV series, Extraordinary Dogs.
Another wonderful video from the fine folks at The Dodo. This one is about complete strangers helping a totally different species in distress. What a concept.
You have to trust me on this one. This actually, really, truly is an "adorable animal video." I've left the seemingly-gruesome comment in by the person posting it because it makes the actually adorable animal video all the funnier in proper perspective.
Trust me. Really.
Another wonderful entry from the fine folks at The Dodo about an animal rescue --
For quite a while now, I've been posted a great many absolutely-wonderful animal videos from what I refer to as the fine folks at The Dodo. Well, the other week, I discovered that last year they developed a TV series with Animal Planet called Dodo Heroes -- and that the second season was just about to begin.
That's to the magic of On Demand, I caught up with the first season, which turned out not to take all that long since there were only six episodes. And all of them were "absolutely wonderful." As was the first episode of the new, second season. I have called the individual, short videos I've been posting "Adorable Animal Videos." The series far-transcends that.
Each episode looks at an individual who has dedicated his or her life to protecting animals, sometimes by themselves or more generally through some small organization they've founded. Each episode focuses on some specific, often very dramatic event they're in the middle of trying to accomplish at that particular time.
The shows have thus far told the stories of --
A veterinarian who trained himself to make prosthetics for animals, and is in the midst of creating a device for an elephant which he's never attempted before.
A woman who has developed a sanctuary for seals off the coast of Ireland.
A married couple who started Animal Defense International to rescue circus animals, and are in the midst of tense negotiations to reunite a mother lion with her cubs that were separated from her -- and who also rescue a spider monkey that has lived its life on a chain since it was a baby, and discovers freedom for the first time..
A woman who has developed a sanctuary in Thailand for elephants and is anxiously trying to negotiate for the release of an elephant which has been chained for a decade..
A veterinarian who rescues koala bears, with the help of her young "koala whisperer" daughter.
A former solider who rescues dogs in Afghanistan and reunites them with the soldiers who had found and saved them.
A woman who sold all of her possessions when she was 21 so she could go protect chimpanzees off the coast of Africa, and is now an expert in the field, working to start a sanctuary, while trying to find a companion for a chimpanzee named Ponso who had been used for medical experiments, then abandoned and has been living alone on a small island for several decades..
The show airs on Animal Planet on Saturday nights at 9 PM East/West Coast times. You can also watch the episodes online here on Animal Planet's website. It's extremely well done, and highly recommended if you like this sort of thing.
This brief trailer only gives the very slightest hint of how terrific, and often very emotional, each episode can be. (One caveat: at the end, it says that Season Two is starting June 9, but clearly they changed that because the first episode has already aired.)
Know too that the sound may be off on the video, and if so you'll have to click the sound icon in the lower right of the frame to turn it on.
Robert J. Elisberg is a two-time recipient of the Lucille Ball Award for comedy screenwriting. He's written for film, TV, the stage, and two best-selling novels, is a regular columnist for the Writers Guild of America and was for the Huffington Post. Among his other writing, he has a long-time column on technology (which he sometimes understands), and co-wrote a book on world travel. As a lyricist, he is a member of ASCAP, and has contributed to numerous publications.
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