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24 Pictures of Adorable Cats And Dogs From Meet The Breeds 2012

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Each year, the American Kennel Club throws Meet the Breeds in New York City's Jacob Javits Center. More than 200 breeds of cats and dogs are available for cuddling and photo ops (if you can get them to sit still!). We hit the floor to bring you adorable pictures and interesting factoids about 24 breeds.

Abyssinian


Abyssinians have uniquely colored coats thanks to a dominant mutant gene that gives each strand of fur a base color, then three bands of darker colors. The hair is lighter at the root, and darker at the ends. The first cat to have its entire genome published was an Abyssinian.

English Springer Spaniel

In 19th and early 20th century Britain, a litter of spaniels would be divided up by size: The smaller dogs were used to hunt woodcock, and were called "Cockers"; bigger dogs were used to flush, or spring, game, and were called "Springers." The first English Springer Spaniel came to Canada from England in 1913.

British Shorthair


These cats get their teddy bear good looks thanks to a short but extremely dense coat, which creates a plush effect. Look familiar? The British Shorthair was the inspiration for Puss in Boots and the Cheshire Cat in Alice in Wonderland.

Beagle


Beagles can't be too tall: In the U.S., their height limit is 15 inches; in England, 16 inches.

Savannah


Savannahs are a cross between domestic cats and Servals, a wild African cat; they can weigh 20 pounds or more, and can be trained to walk on a leash. The breed was accepted by the International Cat Association in 2001.

Portuguese Pointer


This breed came from the Orient to the Iberian Peninsula as early as the 14th Century, and was brought to America by Portuguese bird hunters.

Sphynx


The first attempts at creating this breed began in 1966, when a hairless kitten was born in Ontario, Canada. That kitten, a male named Prune, was bred with other cats in an attempt to create more hairless kittens, but because hairlessness is caused by a recessive gene, those attempts had limited success. More naturally hairless cats were found in Minnesota and Toronto between 1975 and 1978, and these cats were bred with Devon Rex, another cat with little body hair. The Sphynx breed—so-named for its resemblance to the Egyptian Sphinx sculpture—traces its history back to those cats.

Cardigan Welsh Corgi


Known as "the corgi with a tail," this breed is descended from the Teckel or Dachshund family. They were not declared to be a separate breed from the better known Pembroke Welsh Corgi until 1934.

Bengal


These exotic-looking felines are a hybrid of domestic cats and Asian leopard cats, which gives their coats a distinctive marbled and spotted pattern. Bengals are only domestic breed that has rosettes—a spot with a center that is halfway between the color of the coat and the color of the spot—like the ones found on jaguars and ocelots.

Norwich Terrier


The ancestors of these dogs—who have a nose for rats and other vermin—came from England's East Anglia and Leicestershire regions, near Cambridge. In fact, in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, breeders would sell these terriers to Cambridge University students (the dogs got rid of rats in the dorms).

Devon Rex


The founding father of this breed, Kirlee, was born in 1959. These cats are very intelligent, and can be trained to walk on a leash and perform tricks.

Chinese Crested


These dogs also come in a fully-coated variety called Powderpuff.

Toyger


Since the late 1980s, breeders have been trying to replicate the pattern and colors on the coats of tigers. Hence, the toyger. The cats that started off this trend were a striped domestic shorthair named Scrapmetal; a Bengal named Millwood Rumpled Spotskin; and a street cat from Kashmir, India, named Jammu Blu, who had spots between his ears instead of typical tabby lines.

Bull Terrier


Bull terriers go all the way back to 19th century England, when James Hinks bred existing bull-and-terriers (crosses between bulldogs and various terriers), his own white Bulldog Madman and White English Terriers (which are now extinct). The dogs, called White Cavaliers in that day because of their all-white coats, were crossed with brindle Staffordshire terriers in the early 1900s to create a colored variety.

American Wirehair


This breed is the result of a spontaneous mutation that occurred in a kitten born in upstate New York in 1966. The mutation has not yet been reported in any other country.

Border Terrier


Though this dog was not shown as a specific breed until the late 19th century, it can be seen in paintings of hunting scenes from the 18th century. Border Terriers were used by shepherds, farmers and poachers who needed a terrier who could keep up with the horses, go to ground to kill or bolt game, and fit in comfortably in their homes.

LaPerm Shorthair


These cats first appeared in 1982. Some of these cats are born hairless, then grow sparse, curly coats (some even have curly whiskers), but LaPerms can have straight fur, too.

Wire Fox Terrier


For 100 years, the fox terrier was shown in the United States as one breed with two varieties—Smooth and Wire. Separate standards were approved in 1985. The ancestor of the wire is thought to be rough-coated terriers of Wales, Derbyshire, and Durham.

Maine Coon

The Maine Coon gets its name from a widespread, by biologically impossible, legend—that the breed originated from matings between semi-wild domestic cats and raccoons. Another popular theory: the breed came from six pet cats sent to Wiscasset, Maine by Marie Antoinette as she was planning to escape from France during the French Revolution. Most likely, Maine Coons are a cross between domestic shorthair cats and longhairs brought to America by New England seamen or Vikings.

Pumi


There are only 100 Pumis—a Hungarian dog used for herding sheep and cattle—in the United States.

Ragdoll


The breeder who originally developed the Ragdoll breed claimed the matriarchal cat, Josephine, was genetically altered at a medical center where she was taken after she was hit by a car. Afterward, all of her kittens were born with the laid-back personalities this breed is known for (apparently all the kittens born before Josephine's hospitalization acted like normal kittens).

Nederlandse Kooikerhondje

This quiet dog helped kooikers (decoy men) lure ducks into traps. Its name means small Dutch decoy dog; the breed is not yet fully recognized by the American Kennel Club.

Selkirk Rex


This cat has a thick, plush, curly coat that actually comes from a dominant gene. The first Selkirk was born to a house cat in Montana in 1987, and was bred with a black Persian, creating three curly haired and three straight haired kittens.

Greater Swiss Mountain Dog


This dog is one of the earliest Swiss breeds; it was instrumental in the development of both the St. Bernard and the Rottweiler.

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Health
UV Photos Show the Areas We Miss When Applying Sunscreen
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Sunscreen only works if you're actually wearing it. And it's too easy to go through the motions of putting on sunscreen while still leaving large amounts of skin unprotected. Even if you're applying the recommended shot glass of sunscreen before you head out into the world, parts of your skin may still be exposed to harmful rays. Just check out these UV images taken by researchers at the University of Liverpool, spotted by the UK's Metro.

The black-and-white images were taken with a UV camera so that any part of the skin covered by UV-blocking sunscreen would appear dark. Skin without sunscreen on it, by contrast, remains visible. The 57 volunteers in the study—which was recently presented at the British Association of Dermatologists' Annual Conference—were instructed to apply sunscreen to their face as usual.

A black-and-white UV photo of a woman’s blotchy sunscreen application

Some volunteers were more thorough than others, but as a whole, the group ended up missing a median of 9.5 percent of their faces. Men with beards tended to miss a lot of their faces, you might notice in the photos, and people seemed to have trouble with covering the full area around their mouth. However, the main problems occurred around the eyes. Many people missed their eyelids, and more than three-quarters of the group missed the medial canthal region, or the area between the bridge of the nose and the inner corner of the eye.

A UV photo of a man shows white patches of bare skin underneath dark-looking sunscreen.

The finding is significant because the area around the eyes are particularly susceptible to skin cancer. According to the abstract presented at the conference, 5 to 10 percent of skin cancers occur on the eyelids.

Knowing this doesn't necessarily help, though. When the participants were brought back for a second visit, the researchers gave them new instructions that included data on cancer risks for eyelids, the results barely changed. People put slightly more sunscreen on around their eyelids (they missed a median 7.7 percent instead of 13.5 percent of the area) but almost everyone still missed their medial canthal area.

A woman turns her face to show sunscreen coverage in a UV image.

It's not a surprising finding, considering the fact that no one wants to get sunscreen in their eyes. Sunscreen manufacturers recommend that you keep it out of your eyes, and if it does run, you'll end up in tears. So it's not particularly useful to tell people they should be coating their eyelids in Coppertone.

To keep your face super smooth and reduce your likelihood of sun damage, then, the message is clear. Better get some shades, unless you've got a UV-blocking eyeshadow on hand. Better yet, get yourself a hat, too.

[h/t Metro]

All images by Kareem Hassanin, courtesy Kevin Hamill

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Belmond
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travel
Take a Look Inside South America’s First Luxury Sleeper Train
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Belmond

Unlike, say, Japan, South America isn’t particularly well-known for its trains. The continent just got its first luxury sleeper train, though, so you can add it to your multi-day rail travel bucket list. The Belmond Andean Explorer set off on its inaugural journey in May, traveling across Peru from Cusco (near Machu Picchu) to the colonial city of Arequipa.

The train itself, with interiors designed by the London-based firm MUZA and recently featured on Yatzer, is a far cry from your average commuter operation. Each of the rooms has a private bathroom, making even the bunk-bed option look pretty fancy. There’s an observation car with an outdoor terrace where travelers can get some fresh air, have a drink, and watch the scenery go past. There’s also a piano bar and a spa on board.

A window seat in a luxury train car
Belmond

A double bed in a small train car
Belmond

A woman looks out over the rail of the train's observatory car toward a sunset over a lake.
Belmond

The high-altitude train rides take the form of either one- or two-night journeys around Cusco and Lake Titicaca, the continent’s biggest (and highest) lake. Rates start at $462 per person, including all meals. And yes, there’s an open bar.

The views look worth it.

[h/t Yatzer]

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