While the Lunar New Year is traditionally spent with family and loved ones, five elderly Chinese women from Weinan, Shaanxi Province chose to spend the holiday taking care of over 1,300 stray dogs, just as they do every day. Six years ago, Wang Yanfang established a dog asylum as a way to save strays from the pound, where they could be euthanized. Since then, the 60-year-old and four other volunteers—all in their 60s and 70s—have gotten up at 4AM every morning so they can prepare 400 kilograms of food for the hungry pups. The shelter, which is supported solely by donations, makes sure that these animals are fed, cared for, and even groomed regularly.
Despite their good intentions, local media reports that the elderly women have faced other challenges like being bitten by dogs who are less tame than others. But in the end, it’s all worth it to a selfless animal lover like Wang, who has adored animals since she cared for her first dog back in 2000. According to Tencent News, she says, “They’re like your children, you can’t bear to be apart from them, or to lose them.”
Dogs can be some of the most loving, loyal, closest companions that a person can have—which makes losing them that much more difficult, as photographer Zhenia Bulawka learned when she was forced to say goodbye to her beloved, 11-year-old pitbull named Dyuki (a.k.a. Mr. Dukes). For two years, Dukes had fought against Grade III mast cell cancer, but Bulawka and her boyfriend Christian knew it was only a matter of time before the dog’s life drew to a close. Knowing that the end was near, the couple took Dukes and their two other dogs, Ruby and Violet, on their very first—and Dukes’ last—trip to the ocean in order to properly say goodbye to their wonderful pet
The family’s vacation to the beach in Assateague, Maryland last August was a bittersweet time, but Bulawka and Christian were determined to make it special for Dukes. After driving for three hours, they finally arrived at the seashore, where they played, swam, and had a picnic on the sand. Back at the hotel, they watched a beautiful sunset together before curling up and snuggling together on the bed. A month later, Dukes passed away, but his humans and his canine sisters can take comfort in remembering those magical, sunshine-filled days together by the sea.
“Dukes was my best friend,” Bulawka writes on The Dodo. “He was also my muse, as his passion for life served as a constant source of inspiration to me. I could never tire of photographing him. Since his passing, I’ve been told numerous times ‘how lucky Dukes was to have me.’ But in fact, it was me who was so lucky to have him. He was the smartest, funniest, most loyal, incredibly strong, yet equally sensitive dog—all wrapped into one perfect pittie package. He changed my life and I will miss him forever.”
Two years ago, a sweet abandoned dog found a home with a man named Steve Minty. He’s a huge fan of the Pixar film Up, and he even named his canine pal “Dug” after the beloved dog character. And now, Dug has a fantastic new home fit for her name. Minty’s best friend, Esteban, nominated him for the YouTube show Super-Fan Builds, where they construct one-of-a-kind items for super fans. They decided to build Dug her own miniature flying dog house affixed with a bevy of balloons – just like in the movie.
Prop maker Tim Baker and his team began by roughing-out the wood frame, and afterwards the magic starts to happen. They meticulously worked to get every detail right, down to the shingles, weather vane, and garden hose. The entire process is really impressive, especially when they formed the cluster of balloons. For that, they created a giant mold using over 750 tiny plastic eggs that mimicked the shape of the real thing. There’s even a miniaturized Carl that looks out the window.
Watch the video below to see the house built from scratch to finish. It’s safe to say that Dug is a lucky dog!