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The Late Movies: 11 Animals Celebrating Their Birthdays in Style

Remember the excitement and joy you felt as a child when your annual birthday celebration finally rolled around? You can capture that feeling again, at least to some extent, by enjoying these fun videos of pets and zoo animals celebrating in delightful fashion.

A Panda

Here's Yun Zi from the San Diego Zoo digging into her ice and fruit birthday cake created in celebration of her second birthday. Pandas seem to be particularly fond of birthday celebrations, so for more panda parties, don't miss Panda Loves To Party over at Tumblr.

A Boston Terrier

There are tons of dog birthday videos online, but what makes little Rex here so special is the fact that he actually sneezes on cue, just in time to blow out his candle.

Tigers

Nick and Mick of the Oregon Zoo are celebrating their ninth birthday, that happens to land on Halloween, with a birthday cake present and a bunch of carved pumpkins filled with delicious breakfast treats.

Elephants

Just because humans don't like to celebrate their birthdays once they've become seniors doesn't mean elephants feel the same. Here's Tricia of the Perth Zoo celebrating her 55th with a massive ice cake that's just the right size for a few gals weighing in at over a dozen tons.

A Kitty

Pancake might not be quite as famous as Maru, but he's still up there as far as YouTube kitty celebrity is concerned. Here's Pancake pigging out on a stack of his namesake topped with tuna and corn in celebration of his first birthday.

A Cheetah

These days, it's common for zoo cheetahs to be raised with dogs as they provide the big cats with friendship and help them feel more comfortable around humans. Of course, being friends with a big kitty certainly has its perks when your best friend's birthday comes up and the workers at the Cincinnati Zoo where you work give you both a special beef cake with peanut butter and cream cheese frosting along with a bunch of toys.

A Husky

Laika is the tan husky in the family and she's quite happy to be turning one, or at least to get a yummy pupcake, best of all, she even helps sing along to the birthday song at one point.

An Orangutan

Robin of the Denver Zoo sure loves this giant frozen cake filled with peanut butter and covered in raspberry mousse. Of course, getting a delicious treat bag as a present makes turning 32 even sweeter.

A Bear

She may be over the hill, but Ms. Grizz of the Wildwood Zoo still looks gorgeous on her 40th birthday, and she certainly seems to be enjoying all the treats that come with the big celebration.

A Skunk

A lot of people still turn their noses up at the idea of owning a skunk, but Peaches' owner sure loves his little stinker. Here she is enjoying a cupcake and ball for her first birthday, which is a very special treat compared to her usual diet.

Baboons

At least one of these little babies from the Prospect Park Zoo is turning one, but without any information on the page, it's hard to tell whose birthday is actually being celebrated. At least everyone's having a good time though.

Do any of you pet owners celebrate your critters' birthdays? If so, have any of you uploaded the videos? Feel free to leave links to the celebrations in the comments!

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JEKCA
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Animals
Build Your Own Cat With These LEGO-Like Blocks
JEKCA
JEKCA

It’s one thing to commission a custom portrait of your pet, but it’s quite another to build a life-size sculpture of them yourself with more than a thousand LEGO-like bricks. That’s exactly what you can do with the cat sculptures made by the Hong Kong-based toy-brick-makers at JEKCA (“building blocks for kidults,” as the company describes itself).

The pet sculptures, which we spotted over on Bored Panda, come in the shape of various breeds and colors that allow you to choose one that looks uncannily like your own pet. As long as your cat looks like a typical orange tabby or tuxedo shorthair, Siamese, Persian, or other garden variety cat, at least. They come in different colors and are available in multiple positions, whether it’s sitting, walking, pouncing, or playing.

Made of more than 1200 individual bricks each, the cat sculptures run about a foot tall, and between about half a foot and a foot long, depending on whether they’re sitting, standing on their hind legs, or walking. They come with instructions for assembly and can be taken apart and built again as many times as you want. But you don’t have to worry about them falling apart, according to JEKCA, since the blocks are secured by screws. “These cats are like real sculptures and will not collapse or break apart,” the company writes on its Facebook.

Six different calico cat sculptures in different positions
JEKCA

You could build one that looks exactly like your cat or adopt one of the brick animals as a pet itself. Buy a whole team of them, and it’ll look like your house is overrun with a cat gang—minus the extreme litter box cleaning that comes with being a traditional crazy cat lady.

The cat sculptures cost between $60 and $90, plus shipping, depending on the size of the kit and how many bricks it requires. You can see them all here. If cats aren’t your favorite pet, the company also makes dogs, birds, and other animals as well. Although, sadly, unlike their domestic pets, their dolphins and deer don’t come in life-size versions.

[h/t Bored Panda]

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Aflac
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technology
Aflac's Robotic Duck Comforts Kids with Cancer
Aflac
Aflac

Every year, close to 16,000 children in the U.S. are diagnosed with cancer. That news can be the beginning of a long and draining battle that forces kids and their parents to spend large amounts of time with medical providers, enduring long and sometimes painful treatments. As The Verge reports, a bit of emotional support during that process might soon come from an unlikely source: the Alfac duck.

The supplemental insurance company announced at the 2018 Consumer Electronics Show (CES) that it has partnered with the medical robotics company Sproutel to design and manufacture My Special Aflac Duck, a responsive and emotive sim-bird intended exclusively for children undergoing cancer treatment.

When a child cuddles the fuzzy robotic duck, it can cuddle back. It reacts to being cradled and stroked by quacking or moving its head. Kids can also touch special RFID chips emblazoned with emoji on the duck's chest to tell it how they’re feeling, and the device will mimic those emotions.

But the duck isn’t solely for cuddling. In “IV Mode,” which can be switched on while a child is undergoing IV therapy, the duck can help the user relax by guiding them through breathing exercises. Accessories included with the toy also allow children to "draw blood" from the duck as well as administer medication, a kind of role-playing that may help patients feel more comfortable with their own treatments.

Aflac approached Sproutel with the idea after seeing Sproutel’s Jerry the Bear, a social companion robot intended to support kids with diabetes. Other robotic companions—like the Japanese-made seal Paro and Hasbro's Joy for All companion pets for seniors—have hinted at a new market for robotics that prioritize comfort over entertainment or play.

My Special Aflac Duck isn’t a commercial product and won’t be available for retail sale. Aflac intends to offer it as a gift directly to patients, with the first rollout expected at its own cancer treatment center in Atlanta, Georgia. Mass distribution is planned for later this year.

[h/t The Verge]

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