By SARAH GRIFFITHS
That's one freaky feline! Breeders develop a CAT that looks like a WEREWOLF and acts like a DOG
Exotic animals can make popular pets but a cat with a touch of the supernatural will stand out in among the neighbours’ moggies.
A new breed of cat that looks like a werewolf and behaves like a dog has been developed by U.S. breeders
The Lykoi gets its spooky looks because of a genetic mutation in a domestic short hair cat, which prevents the curious creature from growing a full coat of fur, making it looks like a werewolf.
Its name comes from the Greek for 'wolf' and translates as ‘wolf cat’ as the animal has no hair around its eyes, nose, ears and muzzle as well as a consistently patchy coat on the rest of its body.
Curiously Lykois are said to have a ‘hound dog personality’.
‘They like to hunt around the house for whatever they can find.
'They show caution to strangers, but warm up quickly and become very friendly,’
according to the breed’s website.
Perhaps in parallel to supernatural werewolf characters, the cats have a ‘strong prey drive’ that ‘causes them to stalk and pounce on everything they consider to be prey.’
However, unlike a werewolf, whose personality chances at full moon, Lykois are said to be friendly and playful as well as loyal to their owners.
The first official Lykois came had a father with a naturally-occurring Sphinx mutation and a mother who was a black domestic short hair cat.
‘The gene is a natural mutation that appeared in the domestic cat population,’ said Breeder Johnny Gobble.
‘There was no human intervention to create the cat. We are simply using the genetics of natural processes,’ he added.
There were three ‘foundation breeders’ – Mr Gobble, his wife Brittney Gobble and Patti Thomas, who located the first two kittens, while it was Mr Gobble used cats from two groups of kittens to breed the first Lykoi kittens.
They found that the cats were not a Sphinx (a breed of hairless cat) that had retained some of its fur and this was confirmed by DNA testing that did not find the Sphinx gene.
In fact, researchers found that a new breed had been created, but they wanted to make sure the kittens were completely healthy before breeding them.
Tests were run to rule out genetic illnesses and dermatologists at the University of Tennessee examined the animals for skin abnormalities. While none were found, the scientists were stumped at first as to what had caused the strange coat.
They then found that some of the animals' hair follicles lacked all the components needed to create hair and that follicles that did have an undercoat were imbalanced so the hair could not be maintained.
Consequently the cats moult and can go completely bald some of the time – not just on a full moon.
t is hoped that the felines will be categorised as a 'preliminary new breed' by the The International Cat Association (TICA) this coming Autumn when they will be able to be shown at cat shows.
A total of 14 litters of kittens not from the original litter have been reported and there are just seven Lykoi breeders registered in the world, making the kittens hot property.
Mr Gobble said that breeders get requests for the unusual kittens daily and he gets asked about the breed at least ten times a day.
‘We are doing our very best to monitor breeding cats to ensure that the Lykoi cat will be a new breed that has wonderful health, great personality, and the Lykoi (werecat) look,’ he said.
Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2556902/Thats-one-freaky-feline-Breeders-develop-cat-looks-like-WEREWOLF-acts-like-DOG.html#ixzz2t4V2oLWJ
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By: Tracey Rose
Spending time outdoors in sub-zero temperatures isn’t the ideal weight loss plan, but lowering the thermometer a few degrees and exposing the body to colder temperatures in moderation can aid in the fight against obesity. Extreme conditions aren’t needed to see results. New research suggests that while many people keep their indoor temperatures closer to 70 degrees in an effort to stay comfortable, lowering it to the mid 60s can make a difference.
The journal Trends in Endocrinology & Metabolism published evidence from researchers in the Netherlands that shows how body temperature regulation aids weight loss. Wouter van Marken Lichtenbelt and his team at the Maastricht University Medical Center studied 51 men over 10 days. They exposed the men to a 62 degree room and found that exposure to cooler temperature increased the production of brown fat to help them lose weight. Colder temperatures tend to cause the shivers, but the alternative is to use the body’s own brown fat as a source of fuel to keep it warm. When fueling the fire with brown fat, the shivers stop and the body learns to adapt.
A Japanese study went a step further and studied body fat levels over a period of six weeks. The thermostat was set at 62.6 for two hours each day. Then they lowered it to 59 degrees. They found that participants didn’t shiver as much as the study went on and their brown fat levels increased. They were also able to adjust easier to lower temperatures once they had been exposed for a while.
The body is capable of warming itself and adjusting to colder temperatures. As a survival technique, the body fights to maintain a higher temperature and adjust to the cold.
Increasing brown fat is a healthy way to burn off the dangerous white fat that is associated with obesity and a host of other health problems. Weight loss occurs as brown fat helps the body adjust to the cooler temperatures.
Does this mean exposure to extreme temperatures is necessary for weight loss? Not necessarily. Though the study of thermogenics shows that ice baths and drinking ice cold water do have an effect, the idea here is that weight loss is possible simply by lowering the thermostat. Winter months typically keep people indoors with the heat set at a comfortable level. Moving the thermostat down from 68 to 62 can make a difference, however. Doing so for even a few hours per day can help the body burn more fat.
Research continues on how cold affects the ability to lose weight and whether brown fat can be used to help reduce obesity. It is believed that increasing the internal temperature helps burn body fat at a faster rate.
Adjusting to a lower room temperature is by no means a replacement for daily exercise or a healthy eating plan. It isn’t a tool to make up for consuming too many calories. However, colder temperatures can aid weight loss when used in combination with proper diet and exercise. Think of it as another habit to support healthy living.
By Associated Press,
The world knows Nelson Mandela as a man who forever changed the course of modern history and who will surely continue to leave his mark long after his death Thursday at the age of 95.
You may know that he spent 27 years in prison, that he led South Africa out of apartheid and that he served as his nation’s first black president.
But did you know about the role of rugby in his legacy? His musings on Valentine’s Day? The lessons he taught sympathetic prison guards during his time behind bars?
Here are some details from Mandela’s life that you might not have known.
FATHER OF THE NATION
Nelson Mandela’s place as South Africa’s premier hero is so secure that the central bank released new banknotes in 2012 showing his face. Busts and statues in his likeness dot the country and buildings, squares and other places are named after him. At Soweto’s Regina Mundi Catholic church, a center of protests and funeral services for activists during the apartheid years, there is a stained glass image of Mandela with arms raised. South African Airways even emblazoned his silhouetted image on planes.
A $1.25 million project to digitally preserve a record of Mandela’s life went online last year at http://archive.nelsonmandela.org. The project by Google and Mandela’s archivists gives researchers — and anyone else — access to hundreds of documents, photographs and videos. In one 1995 note, written in lines of neat handwriting in blue ink, Mandela muses on Valentine’s day. It appears to be a draft of a letter to a young admirer, in which Mandela said his rural upbringing by illiterate parents left him “colossally ignorant” about simple things like a holiday devoted to romance.
At his inauguration, Mandela stood hand on heart, saluted by white generals as he sang along to two anthems: the apartheid-era Afrikaans “Die Stem” (”The Voice”) and the African “Nkosi Sikelel’ iAfrika” (”Lord Bless Africa”).
A NEW LIFE
When Mandela went free after 27 years, he walked hand-in-hand with his wife Winnie out of a prison on the South African mainland, and raised his right fist in triumph. In his autobiography, “Long Walk to Freedom,” he would write: “As I finally walked through those gates ... I felt — even at the age of seventy-one — that my life was beginning anew.”
A WAYS TO GO
Mandela is widely credited with helping to avert race-driven chaos as South Africa emerged from apartheid. But he could not forge lasting solutions to poverty, unemployment and other social ills that still plague his country. Though relatively stable, it has struggled to live up to its rosy depiction as the “Rainbow Nation.”
Since apartheid ended, the country has peacefully held four parliamentary elections and elected three presidents, and Mandela’s African National Congress said in 2013 the economy had expanded 83 percent since 1994. But corruption in the party has undercut some of its early promise, and the white minority is far wealthier than the black majority, partly fueling violent crime.
Mandela’s last public appearance was in 2010. Bundled up against the cold, he smiled broadly and waved to the crowd at the Soccer City stadium during the closing ceremony of the World Cup, an event that allowed his country to take the world spotlight. Mandela had kept a low profile during the monthlong tournament, deciding against attending the opening ceremony after the death of his great-grand daughter in a traffic accident following a World Cup concert.
MANDELA THE RECONCILER
Mandela was born the son of a tribal chief in Transkei, a Xhosa homeland. Many South Africans of all races call him by his clan name, Madiba, which means “reconciler,” as a token of affection and respect.
THE HARSHER SIDE
Despite his saintly image, Mandela could be harsh. When black journalists mildly criticized his government, he painted them as stooges of the whites who owned the media. Whites with complaints were sometimes dismissed as pining for their old privileges. To critics of his closeness to Fidel Castro and Moammar Gadhafi, Mandela insisted he wouldn’t forsake supporters of the anti-apartheid struggle.
Mandela eventually turned to fighting AIDS, publicly acknowledging in 2005 that his son, Makgatho, had died of the disease. The nation, which has the most people living with HIV in the world at 5.6 million, still faces stigma and high rates of infection.
Mandela celebrated holidays and hosted dignitaries among the huts of rural Qunu in a replica of the prison guard’s home where he lived during his final days of confinement. Ever self-deprecating, Mandela maintained he chose to recreate the home from Victor Verster prison because he was already familiar with it and wouldn’t “have to wander at night looking for the kitchen.” But his fellow South Africans saw the decision as an inspiring way to transform the old structure of imprisonment into one of freedom. Many of Mandela’s close relatives live in Qunu, and the family burial plot is just yards from the home.
‘A DEMOCRATIC AND FREE SOCIETY’
A statement Mandela made during his 1964 sabotage trial revealed his resolve in the fight to end white racist rule. “During my lifetime I have dedicated myself to this struggle of the African people,” Mandela said. “I have fought against white domination, and I have fought against black domination. I have cherished the ideal of a democratic and free society in which all persons live together in harmony and with equal opportunities. It is an ideal which I hope to live for and to achieve. But if needs be, it is an ideal for which I am prepared to die.”
Two months later, he and seven other defendants were sentenced to life in prison.
UNITED BY RUGBY
In 1995, Mandela strode onto the field at the Rugby World Cup final in Johannesburg wearing South African colors and bringing the overwhelmingly white crowd of more than 60,000 to its feet. “Nelson! Nelson! Nelson!” they chanted as the president congratulated the victorious home team. Mandela’s decision to wear the Springbok emblem, the symbol once hated by blacks, conveyed the message that rugby, so long shunned by the black population, was now for all South Africans.
Mandela became South Africa’s first black president in 1994. At the close of his inauguration speech, he said: “Never, never and never again shall it be that this beautiful land will again experience the oppression of one by another and suffer the indignity of being the skunk of the world.”
“Let freedom reign. The sun shall never set on so glorious a human achievement! God bless Africa!”
Mandela was confined to the harsh Robben Island prison off the coast of Cape Town for most of his time behind bars. He and others quarried limestone there, working seven hours a day nearly every day for 12 years, until forced labor was abolished on the island. In secret, Mandela — inmate No. 46664 — wrote at night in his tiny concrete-floored cell.
It was forbidden to quote him or publish his photo, but go-betweens ferried messages from prisoners to anti-apartheid leaders in exile. Prisoners gathered in small groups for Socratic seminars, and Mandela offered lessons on the movement to guards he thought would be open to persuasion. All the guards were white; all the prisoners were black, mixed race, or Asian.
‘LOOK INTO YOURSELF’
“People tend to measure themselves by external accomplishments, but jail allows a person to focus on internal ones; such as honesty, sincerity, simplicity, humility, generosity and an absence of variety,” Mandela says in one of the many quotations displayed at the Apartheid Museum in Johannesburg. “You learn to look into yourself.”
NELSON AND WINNIE
Nelson Mandela divorced Winnie Madikizela-Mandela in 1996, ending a powerful political partnership that had lasted through decades of struggle. As he remained behind bars, she became an activist leader in her own right, leading marches with a fist raised and building a base among the radical wing of the African National Congress. Madikizela-Mandela lost influence as Mandela pushed the ANC along a moderate course.
They had grown apart politically by the time he emerged from prison, and soon the personal toll of the years of physical separation became apparent. But after Mandela retired from public life and focused on the family that had been relegated to second place during his struggle against apartheid, the mother of two of his daughters was welcome alongside his third wife at Christmases and birthdays.
After his retirement from the presidency, Mandela regularly worked from an office in the recently refurbished Johannesburg building that houses the Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory. The office includes framed photographs of Mandela in healthier times with his wife, Graca Machel, former U.N. chief Kofi Annan, fellow activist Walter Sisulu, and others.
A boxing glove, cricket bat and a British police helmet are among the gifts on display. Glass cases show penned messages in books given to Mandela from people including Nadine Gordimer, the South African author and winner of the Nobel literature prize in 1991. Cornel West, an American civil rights activist, addressed his book, “Democracy Matters,” to: “Bro’ Nelson Mandela.”
Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
By: Jessica Moskowitz
'Knockout Game' Hurts Random Victims
It's a dangerous game, now reported in at least six states, and it could happen to anyone walking down the street.
One minute you're minding your own business, the next a complete stranger deliberately knocks you to the ground.
Across the country, police are struggling to tally the full impact of this deadly game. CNN's Pamela Brown reports.
By: Fox News
A recent string of attacks tied to a dangerous game called “Knockout” -- where unsuspecting residents are targeted and sucker-punched – is being investigated as possible hate crimes.
New York police are looking into the growing trend, WPIX reports, after attacks in predominately Jewish neighborhoods in Brooklyn.
The most recent attack was caught on video last week in Crown Heights, Brooklyn, where a group of ten men spotted a man walking alone, punched him and kept moving, according to the station.
But New York is not the only place to see the “Knockout Game” being played out.
In Washington, D.C., Tamera Jackson, 27, told WJLA that a group of teens on bicycles came up behind her last week as she walked home and one of them punched her in the back of the head before the group sped away, laughing.
“For the fun of it.”- Teen, speaking of 'Knockout Game'
According to Fox 31 Denver, similar attacks have occurred in St. Louis and Pittsburgh, where a teacher was knocked out by a 15-year-old as he walked home from school last month. The attack was caught on a security camera video, and the teen was charged with assault.
And in New Jersey, CBS 2 reports, video footage shows Ralph Santiago, 46, randomly targeted for knockout by a group of teens. Santiago was later found dead with his neck broken and head lodged between iron fence posts, according to NJ.com.
Video shows Santiago walking during daytime in an alley, and just as he’s about to pass a pack of teenagers, one launches the fatal, knockout blow.
And what’s the point?
“For the fun of it,” one teen said in the video.
In September, a 13-year-old boy was sentenced to 18 months of confinement for the beating death of a 51-year-old man in upstate New York.
The teen had pleaded guilty to assault and attempted assault, admitting that he started the fatal beating by attempting to knock the man out with a single punch.
The teen said he and his friends were playing a street game called "knockout." His punch apparently had little to no effect, but the follow-up from a 16-year-old boy caused bleeding in the victim's brain, and he died in late May.
The 16-year-old co-defendant was found guilty last month in Onondaga County Family Court of second-degree manslaughter and received the same sentence.
By Lauren Hockenson, Giga Om
Facebook on Thursday announced the final phase of removing an old privacy feature from the social media platform. The feature, which allows users to be hidden from search, will finally be taken away for users who have it enabled.
The feature, called "Who can look up your Timeline by name?" was removed from Privacy settings last year (noted in a December blog post) for those who didn't have it enabled. When enabled, the setting removes the ability for users to access a Timeline profile via search, even when a user puts in the exact name of the person he or she is locating. Now, users that still have that feature enabled will begin to see removal notices from Facebook, indicating that they will be present and visible in Graph Search along with the rest of the Facebook user base.
Facebook says in the blog post that the feature is a vestigial precaution that reaches back before the platform had a sophisticated search algorithm. When Facebook search acted as a mere directory, removing oneself from search made it more difficult for strangers to access a given profile. But now, as Open Graph opens up to search more settings and there is greater visibility of Timelines for friends of friends, the importance of finding a person through search has diminished while controlling the content on any given Timeline has become more important. Facebook says that the feature also caused hiccups in the user experience:
"People told us that they found it confusing when they tried looking for someone who they knew personally and couldn't find them in search results, or when two people were in a Facebook Group and then couldn't find each other through search."Of course, the sunsetting of this feature for those who care about it the most only stresses the importance of checking and updating Facebook privacy settings often. Now, it's more important to consider the content of the Timeline itself: a "private Timeline" is only such when content is marked explicitly "Friends Only." As Facebook continues to make search easier, it's important to keep in mind how these changes impact social media privacy at large.
By Susan Davis, USA TODAY
WASHINGTON — Congressional Republicans failed to move forward Tuesday with a piecemeal approach to fund popular parts of the federal government to lessen the impact of the first government shutdown in 17 years.
House and Senate Republicans had offered short-term funding plans to keep open national parks, the Department of Veterans' Affairs, and other government services in the nation's capital. House Appropriations Chairman Hal Rogers, R-Ky. said the piecemeal approach would "continue to move the ball down the field" towards finding an agreement to resume full government funding.
But the GOP efforts failed to win the necessary support in the House to advance to the Senate. The votes fell well short of the two-thirds threshold needed to suspend House rules.
The Senate had already warned that the plan would meet fate there as every previous attempt by the House to amend the stopgap funding bill. In that chamber, Democrats maintain the only way to end the shutdown is for the House to allow a vote on a stopgap measure to fund the government through mid-November that does not include legislation affecting President Obama's health care law.
Senate Appropriations Chairwoman Barbara Mikulski, D-Md., said she did not support funding the government in "bits and pieces."
"We're the entire United States of America. You keep the whole government going, that's what you're supposed to do," she said. "All they have to do in the House is let the House vote on the Senate (bill) and let the House work it's will."
The White House agreed. "These piecemeal efforts are not serious, and they are no way to run a government. If House Republicans are legitimately concerned about the impacts of a shutdown — which extend across government from our small businesses to women, children and seniors — they should do their job and pass a clean CR to reopen the government," said Amy Brundage, a White House spokeswoman.
Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin, D-Ill., said Democrats were not against debating some of the proposals that Republicans offered in the weeks leading up to the shutdown on the Affordable Care Act. He cited as an example a proposal to repeal a 2.3% tax on medical devices enacted to help pay for the law. However, Durbin said Democrats would not negotiate on the stopgap spending bill, or on a pending vote to increase the debt ceiling, the nation's borrowing limit.
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"After the CR and the debt ceiling, I have been open to that," Durbin said, "Doing this with a gun to your head, as we've said over and over again, is not the appropriate way to bargain."
House Republicans huddled in private earlier Tuesday, and lawmakers showed no signs of losing cohesion on the first day of the shutdown. Republicans are bullish about the politics of a shutdown and they have reason to be, said David Wasserman, an analyst for the non-partisan Cook Political Report.
"Democrats have always believed a shutdown would finally make voters pay attention to how 'extreme' House Republicans are. So far there's not a ton of evidence that the game has changed," Wasserman said.
By Paul Richter
UNITED NATIONS -- Iran’s new president, Hassan Rouhani, told world leaders Tuesday that his government is prepared to “engage immediately in result-oriented” talks with the United States, but also complained about American economic sanctions and military intervention in the Middle East.
In a widely anticipated speech at the United Nations General Assembly, Rouhani said that Iran and the U.S. “can arrive at a framework to manage our differences,” adding that his government has no desire to increase tensions between the two longtime adversaries.
He said he had listened carefully to President Obama’s speech in the morning, in which the U.S. leader called for an intense diplomatic effort to overcome differences about Iran’s disputed nuclear program.
The 64-year-old cleric emphasized his desire for tolerance and moderation. But despite the predictions of Western diplomats, his speech included no major gestures to win over Iran's critics, such as an acknowledgment of the Holocaust.
Rouhani's remarks were far milder than those of his fiery predecessor, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, at similar gatherings. But like Ahmadinejad, he did not miss an opportunity to catalog what he sees as America's misdeeds and staunchly defended Iran’s policies abroad.
He condemned the United States' use of drones and recalled the “millions” of lives lost in Iraq.He complained about American activists who have pushed for tough action against Iran, calling them “warmongering pressure groups.”
And he faulted U.S. officials for repeating that “the military option is on the table” when he said the preferred option should be peace.
Rouhani said his election in June showed the “moderation” of the Iranian public and said the country “poses absolutely no threat to the world or region.”
He said Western sanctions were “violent” and hurt not only their intended target, but also unintended victims, as well as the countries that imposed them.
Cliff Kupchan, an Iran specialist at the Eurasia Group consulting firm, said Rouhani's speech was "the minimum reach-out he could have done."
"Why is a difficult question," Kupchan said. "Probably domestic politics, but could be he's tougher than we thought."
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