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Ten happy animal stories (to make you smile of course!)

Husky Puppy

The 21st of March marks World Happiness Day, and what better way to celebrate than to check out ten of the happiest animal stories to happen over the last year.

Animals share the planet with humans. They are beautiful creatures to share our environment with, companions in our homes, and service animals that help maintain our food supply. How humanity treats the animals around us is a major indicator for the future treatment of our shared planet. In a world facing more and more climate change related challenges, connecting with the animals around us may be an important reminder to continue efforts to mitigate the harmful impacts on the planet. 

From hound dogs running half marathons to penguins swimming thousands of miles annually to thank their rescuer. These animal stories are sure to make you smile.

Here are our picks for the ten happiest animal stories of 2016.

1)  A reading program for little kids and dogs in need of homes:

The Shelter Buddies Reading Program at the Humane Society of Missouri is doing something amazing! They are preparing shelter dogs for their forever homes and giving children an opportunity to improve their reading skills. Each child sits in front of a shy dog’s kennel and reads a children’s book to them. The children learn empathy and patience, and the dog gets to feel loved.

2) Free Willy becomes a reality:

Ocra’s will no longer to be held or bred in captivity in the US. Social media and grassroots activism have been monumental in this environmental win. Interested in learning more? SeaWorld CEO, Joel Manby has even come out to say that the organization will increase their focus on rescue operations. A win for all creatures under the sea!

3) The Manatee population has grown by 500 percent, and the Sea Turtle population is up too!

West Indian manatees and green sea turtles have been endangered for decades.  This year, their population has rebounded, and they are no longer on the endangered list!

A photo posted by HONU (@wailea_78) on

4) A butterfly is 3.5 times more likely to land on your finger now: 

Butterflies are gorgeous, and a real daymaker when they happen to land on you. The population of the most beautifully painted butterflies, The Monarch,  has been dropping significantly over the past few years. In 2015 scientist discovered a huge rebound in the population, deterimining that there are three and a half as many monarch butterflies as the year before.  

A video posted by Tim (@timtast1c) on

A photo posted by @_miscellaneousthings_ on

5)  The Bastardd Cunningfish 

The preservation, protection and continuation of marine life really makes us REALLY happy. Marine life sealed another win, when the UK government committed to creating a marine reserve almost the size of the UK. The name of this territory: Ascension Island. Within this magical place you will find none other than the BASTARD CUNNINGFISH (what a name!). Let’s hear it for The Blue Marine Foundation for securing the area around the Ascension Island to protect this little buddy. 

A photo posted by SIX Nutrition (@vinutrition) on

Check out our campaign for this BA fish. 

6) Mike the donkey wins hearts:

You'll be smiling at this donkey, because this guy is ADORABLE. I can see that smile poking out, don’t try to fight it.  This happy boy is Mike, a donkey from Killorglin, Ireland. This cutie pie almost drowned, but with the help of Animal Heaven Animal Rescue, this guy is all smiles

7)  German Shepherd puppy survives epic swim and is rescued by the US Navy:

Luna, a 1-year-old German Shepherd-husky mix, fell off a fishing boat on the outskirts of San Diego. She then swam two miles to land.  Luna’s owners had already posted RIP instagram pictures of her snuggling on the couch and catching rays on a dock, until she reappeared. She had survived for five weeks on a tiny island, and was rescued by naval officers from a nearby base.

Look at those baby blue eyes!

Call her Minnie Blue Eyes 

8)  A Mosque in Istanbul opens its doors to stray cats:

Everyone, animals most definitely included, deserves a warm place to stay. This is the stance that a mosque in Turkey has taken in opening its doors to stray cats.

9)  Dog accidentally runs half marathon in Huntsville Alabama

Hamlin the hound dog decides to crash a half marathon (and ran a stunning time of 1 hour and 32 minutes) after being left outside by its owner.

“She’s really lazy,” Hamlin’s owner said. (sure, lazy!)

Running is said to build endorphins, and that is one happy pup.

10) Ex- Circus Lions Given New Home

Two ex-circus lions, Jora and Black, were rescued from a Bulgarian circus by the Born Free Federation. They’re currently adapting and thriving in their new home at the beautiful Shamwari Game Reserve, near Port Elizabeth, South Africa.

Now doesn’t the world seem a little brighter after seeing those stories? Nothing like a bunch of animal pictures to make the world a little happier place.