From ANIMAL PEOPLE, March 2002:
Sirius, 4, the yellow Labrador bomb-sniffing dog of Port
Authority police officer David Lim, was found on January 23 in the
rubble of the World Trade Center. Sirius’ remains received the same
ceremonious removal as those of human police and firefighters. Lim
left Sirius in the basement kennel of Tower II on September 11 while
he climbed to the 44th floor to assist with the evacuation. He was
carrying a woman down from the fifth floor when the building
collapsed, but was rescued after six hours in the flaming debris.
Lim is now training a new bomb-sniffing dog, a black Lab named Sprig.
Buddy, 4, a chocolate Labrador given to then-U.S.
President Bill Clinton as a 1997 Christmas present, escaped from the
Clinton home in Chappaqua, New York, on January 2, racing in hot
pursuit of a contractor’s truck, and was killed by another vehicle.
Buddy was neutered in March 1998 at the personal request of actress
Doris Day. The highly publicized surgery helped to promote dog
sterilization surgery nationwide.
Wewei, the first calf cloned in China, died just hours
after her birth on January 18 from congenital defects.
Hera, 3, was euthanized on January 30 by the San Francisco
Department of Animal Care and Control, a year and four days after
she and her mate Bane killed Diane Whipple, 33, outside the door of
the San Francisco apartment that Whipple shared with her life partner
Sharon Smith. Bane was euthanized the same day, but owners Robert
Noel, 60, and Marjorie Knoller, 46, contended that Hera only tore
Whipple’s clothing, and appealed her execution order all the way to
the California Supreme Court despite losing at every level. Noel and
Knoller are currently on trial for involuntary manslaughter; Knoller
is also charged with second degree murder. In addition, Smith is
pursuing a wrongful death civil suit against them.
Bluey, a blue Pacific groper fish familiar to snorklers and
divers at Clovelly Bay, Sydney, Australia, and a member of a
species protected by law since 1969, was killed in mid-January by a
young man who first shot her with a spear gun outside the
spearfishing season, then dragged her ashore still alive and knifed
her in front of a horrified crowd. If identified and captured, the
perpetrator could be fined $11,000 (Australian).
Grandma, 31, the oldest captive giant anteater on record,
known for her voracious appetite for avocados, was euthanized on New
Year’s Day at the Santa Barbara Zoo, after falling ill at Christmas.
Born in the wild, she gave birth to 15 offspring in captivity.
Hailey, 17, one of the first two stranded California sea
otter pups to be rescued and displayed by the Monterrey Bay Aquarium,
was euthanized on January 3 due to conditions of age. Hailey arrived
at the aquarium in March 1984, before anyone had much idea how or if
sea otters could be returned to the wild. The Monterrey Bay Aquarium
eventually pioneered rehabilitation-and-release techniques, but
Hailey was never a release candidate.
Clarry, 19, believed to be the oldest male koala in
captivity, died on February 8 at the San Francisco Zoo. He was one
of a pair of male koalas sent by the Queensland National Park &
Wildlife Service in Australia in 1985 to live at Koala Crossing, the
zoo’s popular koala habitat.
Ginkichi, 42, the oldest penguin in captivity, died on
February 11 at the Nagasaki Penguin Aquarium. Ginkichi and 10 other
penguins were brought to Japan in 1962 by an Antarctic whaling
vessel. The next longest-lived penguin in captivity was believed to
be another of the group, who died in 1996.
Krishnan, 59, resident elephant at the Veera Raghavar
temple in Thiruvallur, India, died on February 21 after a brief
Masiha, 20, among the oldest Asiatic lions in India, died
on December 28, 2001, at the Rajkot Zoo, her home since 1992,
when she came from the Sakarbaugh Zoo in Junagadh after bearing two
Chuckles, 34, the Amazon River dolphin who lived 16 years
longer than any other member of his species on record, a resident of
the Pittsburgh Zoo & Aquarium since 1970, died on February 20.
Chuckles was notorious for reputedly once pulling a female zoo worker
into his tank and attempting to rape her. Keeper Randy Goodlet told
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette staff writer Don Hopey that Chuckles didn’t
really do that, but did bite all of his trainers, a zoo volunteer,
and three visitors at various times. More than 100 Amazon River
dolphins quickly died after import into the U.S. during the 1960s and
1970s before keepers realized that unlike marine dolphins, who need
deep tanks to float in while they sleep, river dolphin need shallow
water where they can beach themselves on a sloping botton to sleep.