WTF Fun Fact 13519 – Dog Eats Passport

It’s another one of those stories: – man meets woman, man and woman plan wedding in Italy, man’s dog eats passport right before the wedding so he can’t travel. A tale as old as time, right?

For Donato Frattaroli of Massachusetts, the days after his wedding became a mad dash against time, bureaucracy, and a mischievous golden retriever named Chickie. Just days before he was set to fly to Europe for his wedding, Chickie decided to indulge in a snack that put the entire celebration in jeopardy: Frattaroli’s passport.

Chickie’s Appetite for Adventure

Anyone who has a pet knows that they can sometimes get themselves into mischief. The one-year-old golden retriever, endearingly named Chickie – short for Chicken Cutlet, took this to a new level. Multiple pages of Frattaroli’s passport, crucial for his upcoming trip to Italy, bore evidence of Chickie’s taste for international cuisine. One can only wonder if Chickie sensed the significance of the document or simply saw it as another chew toy.

Dog Eats Passport

Discovering the chewed-up passport so close to their wedding date must have been a heart-stopping moment for Frattaroli and his fiancée, Magda Mazri. The panic that would ensue in such a scenario is unimaginable for most. With a scheduled wedding reception in Italy just around the corner, every second counted.

Normally, replacing a passport can be a tedious process, often taking weeks. Undeterred, the soon-to-be-wed couple took quick action, reaching out to local lawmakers for assistance. Their pleas didn’t fall on deaf ears. Rep. Stephen Lynch and Sen. Edward Markey of Massachusetts swiftly stepped in, aiding the couple in expediting the typically lengthy passport renewal process.

A Paws-itive Spin

Optimism and perseverance paid off. Just a few days later, following a crucial appointment on Monday, Frattaroli had a brand-new passport by Wednesday, as reported by Boston ABC affiliate WCVB. A story that began with potential heartbreak had turned into a heartwarming tale of community support and swift action.

Learning from the experience, Frattaroli told WCVB about his plans to invest in a file cabinet or safe, ensuring such precious documents stay out of Chickie’s playful reach in the future.

Not ones to let a dramatic incident overshadow their joy, the couple turned the situation into a fun anecdote. They shared a celebratory photo of Frattaroli’s new passport. And in a delightful twist, Chickie wasn’t left out of the travel plans.

The golden retriever received his very own “pupster passport” – a playful nod to the chaos he unwittingly caused. This special passport boasted stamps from fun destinations such as a fire hydrant, the beach, and of course, “Granny’s home.”

A Journey of Gratitude After Dog Eats Passport

The overwhelming support and assistance the couple received in their time of need left a lasting impression. “We are extremely grateful. …All of the support has not gone unnoticed and we are forever thankful!” Mazri expressed to ABC News.

As the couple finally set off for their dream wedding in Italy, Mazri joyfully exclaimed, “Andiamo!” – “Let’s go!” in Italian.

This story, while filled with initial panic, serves as a reminder of the unpredictability of life. It’s a testament to the importance of community, resilience, and maintaining a sense of humor, even when faced with unexpected challenges.

And of course, it’s also a gentle nudge to all pet owners to keep vital documents away from their furry friends’ curious paws.

 WTF fun facts

Source: “Groom gets new passport in time for wedding after dog ate it” — Good Morning America

WTF Fun Fact 13243 – Missing Dog Returns To Shelter

A dog that went missing from its new home in Texas walked 10 miles to her former shelter and rang the doorbell. The story was reported by the Animal Rescue League of El Paso. The shelter has doorbell camera footage of the dog named Bailey returning to the shelter two days after she went missing in late January 2023.

Missing dog returns “home”

Loretta Hyde, founder of Animal Rescue League of El Paso, told USA Today (cited below) that “A family had adopted the friendly husky mix from the Animal Rescue League of El Paso last month. At some point soon after, Bailey got loose and ended up running away.”

The shelter put the call out on Facebook for local residents to keep an eye out for Bailey. While there were a few sightings, no one was able to catch her.

Luckily, Bailey knew the way back to safety. She just didn’t seem to know the way back to her new home.

After spending two days missing, the El Paso shelter doorbell camera activated and alerted workers to a 1am visitor on January 31. It was Bailey – and she had walked 10 miles to get to where she thought was “home.”

She was safe and unharmed, but very hungry after going a few days without food.

“I’ll be darn, at 1:42 in the morning she’s ringing the doorbell like, ‘I’m home,‘” Hyde told USA Today. “The Ring camera kept going off and off and off … and you’ll see in the video that she’s running out there, sitting, waiting for somebody to come.”

One one of the shelter’s workers was able to talk to the dog through the camera. She called Bailey’s name and the pup “booped” the camera.

Return to sender

Bailey took a day to sleep off her big adventure and make up for lost calories at the shelter.

It appears Bailey went missing under innocent circumstances. Her new owner had been up for days searching for her and had even stayed out all night when she first went missing. They contacted the shelter immediately for help.

Bailey was happily reunited with her new family after getting a checkup, and everyone was grateful for the happy ending.  WTF fun facts

Source: “Animal Rescue League of El Paso” — Facebook
“Bailey the dog was lost in El Paso. Then she found her old shelter and rang the bell” — USA Today

WTF Fun Fact 13200 – A Group of Pugs is Called a Grumble

A group of pugs is called a grumble. Whatever you think of pugs, there’s something cute and silly about the grouping name. It’s certainly better than a “murder” of crows, right? Now those are some animals who got a raw deal.

Why a group of pugs is called a grumble

You can actually use “grumble” or “a grumbling” to refer to a group of pugs. But why?

Pugs are known for the snorting sound they make because of the shape of their nose. We suppose that sounds like a grumble.

But it’s more likely that the breed’s characteristic deep, throaty barking sounds are the grumble being referred to.

Pugs have a distinct, low-pitched bark that sounds like a growl or a grumble. Pugs are known for being very vocal and expressive.

It’s worth noting that a group of any dog breed is called a kennel, pack, or litter but different animals have different colloquial names, like a pride of lions.

How did we get pugs?

Pugs are actually an ancient breed of dogs that originate in China. They were known as “lo-sze” and were kept by the Emperors of China as lapdogs and companions.

They were also used as guard dogs and were highly valued for their loyalty and affectionate nature. Pugs were kept in the imperial palace and were considered a symbol of royalty and prestige.

Pugs were first brought to Europe in the 16th century by traders and soon became popular among the European nobility. They were particularly popular in Holland and England, where they were bred to have a shorter snout and a cocked tail.

The breed was further refined in the 18th and 19th centuries, and the modern Pug we know today was developed. Pugs were officially recognized as a breed by the American Kennel Club (AKC) in 1885.

Pugs are known for their distinctive wrinkles, short snout, and compact size, which makes them well-suited for living in small spaces. They also have friendly and playful personalities.

Pug problems

Pugs are a brachycephalic (short-nosed) breed. As a result, they’re prone to a number of health problems due to their unique facial structure.

For example, their short snout and small trachea can make it difficult for them to breathe, leading to respiratory issues or heat stroke in hot weather. In addition, they’re bulging eyes make them more likely to develop injuries, infections, and eyelid and cornea issues.

Pugs are also prone to skin fold dermatitis since the wrinkles on their faces can trap moisture and bacteria, leading to skin irritation and infection. Hip dysplasia and obesity are other risks in pugs due to their breeding.

That’s certainly something to grumble about!

However, proper care and regular vet checkups can help prevent or manage these health issues and ensure a good quality of life for a pug.  WTF fun facts

Source: “A Group of Pugs is Called…” — National Purebred Dog Day

WTF Fun Fact 13051 – Pairing Cheetahs and Dogs

Zoos are pairing their male cheetahs with emotional support dogs so that they have companions. It turns out that pairing cheetahs and dogs is a great idea for both animals.

Why pairing cheetahs with dogs works

Cheetahs are very nervous animals. Their “fight or flight” response is largely set to flight. That means they’re always looking out for predators. But in a zoo, they don’t have any. Nevertheless, it’s an instinct, so all the nervous energy builds up inside them. Needless to say, no one wants a stressed-out cheetah.

While the San Diego Zoo was one of the first places to try pairing cheetahs with companions, the idea originated elsewhere.

According to Atlas Obscura (cited below), it all began in Oregon. “In 1976, research scientist and conservation biologist Laurie Marker was living in Winston, a town of about 3,000 people. As the curator of a cheetah-breeding program at Wildlife Safari, she found herself hand-rearing a lonely cheetah cub named Khayam.”

Marker didn’t have a littermate to entertain Khayam, so she turned to man’s best friend. More specifically, she enlisted the help of a Lab-mix named Shesho.

Fast friends

Khayam and Shesho grew up together and acted as surrogate siblings for one another. The experiment was a success and the dog chilled out the cheetah. “Now, when a cub that’s abandoned or orphaned ends up in human care, many zoos pair the cat with a dog as a substitute sibling,” noted Atlas Obscura.

Marker provided the San Diego Zoo with a cheetah named Arusha a few years later and recommended they raise him with a dog. That was when the pairing hit the news. Who doesn’t love an interspecies friendship story?

Cheetah moms will often forsake single cubs, so finding a way to make captive cubs happy (or save them from death by neglect in the wild) was an important move for those trying to save cheetahs from extinction.  WTF fun facts

Source: “An Emotional Support Dog Is the Only Thing That Chills Out a Cheetah” — Atlas Obscura

WTF Fun Fact 12790 – Dog Branded a Fake Hero By NYT

In 1908, the New York Times ran a story calling a dog in Paris a fake hero. But before you jump to the canine’s defense, you might want to hear why. It turns out he was a bit of a bad boy.

Dog Saves Child

As the story is told, a heard a child screaming for help one day by the Seine river in Paris. And like a proper hero, he jumped in to rescue the poor kiddo.

Of course, he was greatly rewarded.

It turns out that the slab of meat he received as a reward was something he didn’t want to give up. So he presumably figured he’d just wait by the Seine to see if his heroics could be of service again. And it didn’t take long for another child to fall in.

Once again, the dog saved the child and was rewarded.

Now, remember the story of Pavlov’s dogs.

“Fake hero” dog pushes children

Eventually, someone noticed that a suspicious number of children were falling into the Seine, and always nearby a certain meat-loving canine. At first, people thought there was some sort of child-drowning criminal wandering about the neighborhood.

It didn’t take long for people to figure out that the dog eventually started pushing kids in if he had to wait too long for a rescue and reward scenario to present itself.

That’s what landed him on the front page of the NYT in a story titled “DOG A FAKE HERO.”

Now, whether the story is true or not, we can’t say. We only know what the NYT reported. Sadly, they didn’t follow up on what may have happened to the dog nor did they mention whether or not any of the children noticed that they took a swim courtesy of the canine.

 WTF fun facts

Source: “The Dog Who Kept Pushing Kids Into A River To Acquire Steak Rewards” — IFL Science

WTF Fun Fact 12449 – Sly Stallone’s Dog

We heard this one straight from the legendary actor’s mouth (or Instagram page, which in 2022 is roughly the same thing).

It’s a pretty sad fact, actually. Having to sell your dog for food because you’re both starving must be heart-wrenching. And making the journey to repurchase him, paying out some of the first money you’ve laid eyes on in years sounds like it comes straight from a movie.

But here’s the skinny from Sly himself, which he posted alongside a photo of him and Butkus as a pup from 1971:

1971… Since we’re on the subject of ” man’s best friend” this is myself and Butkus as a puppy, we were both, thin, hungry and living in a flophouse above a subway stop, I used to say this apartment had ” … Hot and cold running roaches” anyway there was not much to do except spend time with each other and that’s where I started to learn the craft of screenwriting. Since I never went out, I relied on his companionship, And actually it was his idea to write Rocky, but don’t tell anyone…. Years later when things got even worse I had to sell him for $40 in front of a 7-Eleven store, because I couldn’t afford food, then like A modern day miracle, the screenplay for Rocky sold, and I could buy and buy him back, but the new owner knew I was desperate, and charged me $15,000 … He was worth every penny! #NewYorkCity #HellsKitchen#BullMastiff#It‘sADogsWorld. #MoreToCome#inspiration#ThunderingYourHeart#GoingThedistance

Now, to be completely honest, we were most surprised that Stallone was a screenplay writer and that he wrote the screenplay for Rocky. In fact, he wrote it in 3-and-a-half days, right after watching the championship match between Muhammad Ali and Chuck Wepner on March 24, 1975.

If you’re confused by the dates, only the photo itself is from 1971; the story is from 1975.

– WTF fun facts

Source: Sylvester Stallone @officlaslystallone — Instagram