News Hounds: ‘Bacon Bit’ the therapy pig

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— ERIC — — ERIC — MARK MAY BE ON VACATION, BUT ESTIE AND LOLA HAVE STILL BEEN HARD AT WORK ROUNDING UP THE BEST ANIMAL STORIES OF THE WEEK.

— SUSAN — — SUSAN — HERE'S THIS WEEK'S EDITION OF THE NEWSHOUNDS.

CBS – FRI0070 CHRISTMAS CAME EARLY FOR SOME OF THE ANIMALS AT THE LONDON ZOO.

SIX-MONTH-OLD SUMATRAN TIGER CUBS ACHILLES AND KARIS USED THEIR NEWLY LEARNED HUNTING SKILLS TO RIP OPEN THEIR PRESENTS.

SUMATRAN TIGERS ARE NOW CLASSIFIED AS CRITICALLY ENDANGERED WITH JUST 300 LEFT IN THE WILD.

ZOO KEEPERS WRAPPED UP MEAT AS THEIR PRESENTS AND SCENTED THEM WITH ONLY THE BEST.

SOT ESTIE SAYS NOW THAT'S A LUXURIOUS GIFT.

CBS – MON0181 CANADIAN FIREFIGHTERS RESCUED A FEMALE MOOSE TRAPPED IN ICE.

AND IT WAS ALL CAUGHT ON CAMERA.

A LOCAL HOMEOWNER CALLED AFTER SPOTTING THE ANIMAL IN THE SHEDIAC RIVER IN NEW BRUNSWICK.

THE TEAM HAD TO USE AXES TO BREAK UP THE ICE.

OFFICIALS SAY THEY WORKED FOR ABOUT AN HOUR AND A HALF TO GET THROUGH AND FREE THE MOOSE.

CBS – TUE0211 THIS MUST BE ONE TIRED MOMMA.

THESE MEERKAT PUPS WERE BORN NOVEMBER SEVENTH IN AUSTRALIA — SIX OF THEM, THE LARGEST MEERKAT LITTER EVER FOR THE TARONGA ZOO.

MEERKATS TYPICALLY ONLY HAVE THREE OR FOUR PUPS IN THE WILD.

THE BABIES ARE HEALTHY AND PROGRESSING NORMALLY.

DAD AND AN OLDER DAUGHTER ARE HELPING MOM WITH THE PUPS.

BUT IF SHE LOOKS TIRED, THERE'S A GOOD REASON.

MEERKATS HAVE A GESTATION PERIOD OF JUST ELEVEN WEEKS.

AND THIS IS HER *THIRD* LITTER *THIS YEAR.

* CNN – NE-008TH TRAVEL CAN BE STRESSFUL BUT NEW YORK'S ALBANY INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT HAS A WAY TO CALM TRAVERLS.

MEET BACON BITS, THE THERAPY PIG.

THE 101 POUND CHARMER INTERACTS WITH TRAVLERS TO DE-STRESS THEM BEFORE A LONG FLIGHT.

SOT Bacon Bits is a perfect match for the public.

He loves people.

He wags his tail.

He's friendly.

BACON BITS WAS GIFTED TO TERRY HUTCHINSON WHEN SHE WAS RECOVERING FROM BEING ILL.

TOGETHER, THE TWO VISIT 65 DIFFERENT FACILITIES AND NURSING HOMES EACH YEAR, DELIVERING SMILES.

LOLA SAYS THIS PROVES ONCE AND FOR ALL THAT EVERYTHING IS BETTER WITH BACON.

AND THAT'S THIS WEEK'S EDTION OF THE NEWSHOUNDS.