On the lam
Prairie dogs pop up and out of zoo home
An Ohio zoo is trying to round up runaway prairie dogs and is asking its neighbors for help. The Columbus Zoo and Aquarium said Friday 11 of the critters wriggled their way out of temporary quarters and so far only four have been recovered. Assistant curator Jeremy Carpenter says there's no reason to believe the animals have left zoo property. But he says nearby residents are being asked to watch for them. Oh, and they're not dangerous.
Hitler-mocking mutt made furor
Newly discovered documents have revealed Nazis' dogged obsession with a Finnish mutt that gave not a howl, but a heil. In the months preceding Adolf Hitler's invasion of the Soviet Union, Berlin's Foreign Office commanded its diplomats to gather evidence on the dog and its owner — and even plotted to destroy his pharmaceutical business. The Dalmatian mix named Jackie belonged to Tor Borg, a businessman from Tampere. Borg's wife, Josefine, a German citizen known for her anti-Nazi sentiments, dubbed the dog "Hitler" because of the way it raised a paw high in the air, much like Germans greeting the fuhrer with a cry of "Heil Hitler!" Borg was ordered to the German Embassy in Helsinki and questioned about his dog, but Borg and his company survived the war unscathed. Jackie also died a natural death despite his paw-raising parody.
Wild womb ride
Twister baby okay despite flying cow
A Minnesota woman named her new baby Skylar after being hit by a flying cow during a tornado last summer. Skylar Schwab was the first baby born in Wadena, Minn., this year and is considered the youngest survivor of the twister that hit the town in June. New mom Samantha Wittstruck told KSAX-TV in Redwood Falls, Minn., "It was a big part of her life and she survived it." One month pregnant, Samantha was knocked cold during the June 17 storm and woke up with a cow on top of her, KSAX reported. But Skylar emerged apparently no worse for wear this month at 7 pounds, 9 ounces.
Owner whacks Lizzie Borden site
The owner of a Salem, Mass., museum dedicated to Lizzie Borden said he decided to shut it down at the end of December. Leonard Pickel said the 40 Whacks Museum wouldn't make enough money during the slow winter months to cover its costs, the Salem News reported Monday. "We were trying to be different and bring people to Salem," Pickel said. Lizzie Borden was charged with the murders of her father and stepmother in 1892 but was acquitted at trial.
Compiled from Times wire services and other sources