5 Animal Couples Who Got Married

iStock / ultramarinfoto
iStock / ultramarinfoto

Getting hitched isn't just for people. Here are a few animals that took the leap into holy matrimony.

1. Weddings Are Going to the Dogs

Wendy Diamond, founder of Animal Fair magazine, is one of the many humans who have competed to arrange for their pet to participate in the most expensive dog wedding. One party that held the title in the past spent over $32,000 on an affair that included a chocolate fountain for the humans (the pooches couldn’t partake—chocolate is poisonous to dogs).

But Ms. Diamond wanted to ensure her puppy’s Guinness Book title couldn’t be beaten so easily, so she put together a pet wedding worth $158,000—including a dog dress valued at $4000. Before you get too disgusted, it’s worth noting that while the wedding was worth that much, Diamond didn’t actually pay a penny for the event. Instead, all the foods, dresses, services and everything else were donated, and the wedding itself was a fundraiser for the Humane Society; reserving tables at the party cost $10,000 each.

Unfortunately, during the planning process, Diamond’s puppy Lucky passed away from cancer of the spleen, causing a last minute bridal replacement. The wedding planner quickly headed to a local shelter and adopted a new best friend, Baby Hope, who was soon married to celebrity comfort dog, Chilly Pasternak, in front of celebrities such as Bette Midler … and Triumph the Insult Comic Dog, who officiated the ceremony.

2. Don’t Say “Neigh,” Say “I Do”

To celebrate Valentine’s Day last year, the Pegasus Therapeutic Riding Program helped their once confirmed bachelor, Packer, tie the knot with his true love, Honey Bun. In his mid-thirties, the lovely stallion finally decided to finally settle down with his lovely—and much younger—22-year-old fiancée. The ceremony was simple, but beautiful, culminating in the two sharing a slice of tasty wedding cake.

3. This Wedding Was Just Monkey Business

A zoo in Wenling, China organized the event hoping to attract more visitors. Don’t miss this link to more photos. Wukong and Xiaoya's formal wear is just fantastic.

4. This Wedding Was For the Birds

It seems to be fairly common for zoos in China to hold wedding ceremonies on Valentine’s Day in order to attract visitors. Dalian Sun Asia Ocean World held a group wedding ceremony for penguins that they were hoping would start breeding together. These two even got to enjoy a lovely car ride in a convertible.

5. Do You Take This Bride Until You Croak?

Not all animal weddings are such light-hearted affairs. In India, frog weddings are sometimes held in small Hindu villages during times of drought with the hopes that the marriage will please the rain gods and ensure enough rain for a good harvest.

Kodak’s New Cameras Don't Just Take Photos—They Also Print Them

Your Instagram account wishes it had this clout.
Your Instagram account wishes it had this clout.

Snapping a photo and immediately sharing it on social media is definitely convenient, but there’s still something so satisfying about having the printed photo—like you’re actually holding the memory in your hands. Kodak’s new STEP cameras now offer the best of both worlds.

As its name implies, the Kodak STEP Instant Print Digital Camera, available for $70 on Amazon, lets you take a picture and print it out on that very same device. Not only do you get to skip the irksome process of uploading photos to your computer and printing them on your bulky, non-portable printer (or worse yet, having to wait for your local pharmacy to print them for you), but you never need to bother with ink cartridges or toner, either. The Kodak STEP comes with special 2-inch-by-3-inch printing paper inlaid with color crystals that bring your image to life. There’s also an adhesive layer on the back, so you can easily stick your photos to laptop covers, scrapbooks, or whatever else could use a little adornment.

There's a 10-second self-timer, so you don't have to ask strangers to take your group photos.Kodak

For those of you who want to give your photos some added flair, you might like the Kodak STEP Touch, available for $130 from Amazon. It’s similar to the regular Kodak STEP, but the LCD touch screen allows you to edit your photos before you print them; you can also shoot short videos and even share your content straight to social media.

If you want to print photos from your smartphone gallery, there's the Kodak STEP Instant Mobile Photo Printer. This portable $80 printer connects to any iOS or Android device with Bluetooth capabilities and can print whatever photos you send to it.

The Kodak STEP Instant Mobile Photo Printer connects to an app that allows you to add filters and other effects to your photos. Kodak

All three Kodak STEP devices come with some of that magical printer paper, but you can order additional refills, too—a 20-sheet set costs $8 on Amazon.

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The Reason Dogs Are Terrified of Thunderstorms—And How You Can Help

The face of a dog who clearly knows that a hard rain's a-gonna fall.
The face of a dog who clearly knows that a hard rain's a-gonna fall.
Charles Deluvio, Unsplash

Deafening thunder can be a little scary even for a full-grown human who knows it’s harmless, so your dog’s terror is understandable. But why exactly do thunderstorms send so many of our pawed pals into a tailspin?

Many dogs are distressed by unexpected loud noises—a condition known as noise aversion, or noise phobia in more severe cases—and sudden thunderclaps fall into that category. What separates a wailing siren or fireworks show from a thunderstorm in a dog's mind, however, is that dogs may actually realize a thunderstorm is coming.

As National Geographic explains, not only can dogs easily see when the sky gets dark and feel when the wind picks up, but they can also perceive the shift in barometric pressure that occurs before a storm. The anxiety of knowing loud noise is on its way may upset your dog as much as the noise itself.

Static electricity could also add to this anxiety, especially for dogs with long and/or thick hair. Tufts University veterinary behaviorist Nicholas Dodman, who also co-founded the Center for Canine Behavior Studies, told National Geographic that a static shock when brushing up against metal may heighten your dog’s agitation during a storm.

It’s difficult to nail down why each dog despises thunderstorms. As Purina points out, one could simply be thrown off by a break from routine, while another may be most troubled by the lightning. In any case, there are ways to help calm your stressed pet.

If your dog’s favorite spot during a storm is in the bathroom, they could be trying to stay near smooth, static-less surfaces for fear of getting shocked. Suiting them up in an anti-static jacket or petting them down with anti-static dryer sheets may help.

You can also make a safe haven for your pup where they’ll be oblivious to signs of a storm. Purina behavior research scientist Ragen T.S. McGowan suggests draping a blanket over their crate, which can help muffle noise. For dogs that don’t use (or like) crates, a cozy room with drawn blinds and a white noise machine can work instead.

Consulting your veterinarian is a good idea, too; if your dog’s thunderstorm-related stress is really causing issues, an anti-anxiety prescription could be the best option.

[h/t National Geographic]