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Police help canine commuter find her way home

British Transport Police have helped a canine commuter find her way home, after an unexpected journey.

Princess, a four-year-old Staffordshire Terrier, escaped from her back garden in Rochdale on Friday, 2nd January, and headed to Castleton station where she hopped on board a train to Manchester.

Princess with her owners and helpful officers Credit: British Transport Police

Princess disembarked at Manchester Victoria, where station staff handed her over to PC Christopher O’Connor and PCSO Lee Howard.

PC O'Connor tweeted asking for help in finding her owners, and Manchester Dog's Trust scanned her microchip to try and find her home address.

After a bit of detective work and following of leads the Hughes family came forward to claim Princess.

Amanda Hughes said: “I knew she’d got a train into town within 40 minutes of her going missing. I’d posted it on my Facebook account and someone replied saying they’d spotted her on Twitter and Facebook.

"They said they were sure it was Princess but I thought it’s just not something she would do. We don’t live far from the station, but we always walk her in the other direction so how she found her way there and then jumped on a train is a mystery but she is a bit of a character.”

PC Christopher O’Connor who, along with PCSO Howard, escorted Princess to safety after her adventure said: “She’s a lovely dog and she was a real pleasure to deal with, she was so affectionate and friendly. This was definitely one of our nicer jobs, we got a great deal of satisfaction from seeing her get home safely.

“It’s great to think that, thanks to a lot of teamwork with colleagues at Northern Rail and Greater Manchester Police, there was a happy ending.”

Princess is now safely home and has a new microchip, to help find her if she takes a day trip again.

Escaped llama 'recovering well' at home

Calista the llama escaped last week Credit: MEN Syndication

A llama who escaped from a farm in Littleborough last week is recovering well, after she caused chaos for dozens of motorists.

Calista the llama escaped from her field after being scared by a dog. After running around the town for six hours, she was returned home and is recuperating.

Owner Dan Taylor said: :“She was very frightened. I would really urge dog owners not to let their animals out loose in the area"

Calista and owner Dan Taylor Credit: MEN Syndication

Rare giraffe arrives at North West zoo

Keepers at Chester zoo have welcomed the arrival of a rare Rothschild’s giraffe.

The calf has been named Zahra, meaning ‘flower’ in Swahili.

Rothschild's are one of the world’s most endangered subspecies of giraffe, with recent estimates suggesting few than 1,100 are left in the wild.

Zahra makes her debut at Chester Zoo Credit: Chester Zoo


Cat shot with airgun

Norris Credit: RSPCA

The RSPCA is investigating the shooting of cat in a Lancashire village.

The adult male Maine Coon cat, called Norris, was found collapsed with serious injuries near his owner’s home in Calder Vale earlier this month.

He had several airgun pellets lodged in his body.

RSPCA inspector Amy McIntosh says the pet was nearly killed.

“It was touch and go for a while when he was taken straight to the vet. Because of injuries to his face, it was very difficult for him to eat.

“It is by sheer luck that he didn’t suffer a slow and painful death that no animal should have to endure.”


Norris is now back home, but still hasn’t been outside after spending a week at the vets.

His owner, Martin Meighan, says it was a huge shock when the vet told them what had happened.

“We thought he might have been hit by a car, as these things happen. When the vet told us that he’d been shot though, we couldn’t believe it.

“He’d got a broken jaw and there was damage to his tongue as well, but he’s a big cat and maybe that is what saved him as he was able to drag himself back home where we found him. “Everybody around here has animals and we’re all big animal lovers, so nobody can understand who would do this, or why?”


The maximum sentence someone can face for causing unnecessary suffering to an animal under the Animal Welfare Act is up to six months in prison and a fine of up to £20,000.

The RSPCA is asking anyone with information to call 0300 123 8018

The cat suffered multiple injuries Credit: RSPCA

New arrivals are a handful for keeper at Chester Zoo

Newborn Fischer’s turacos Credit: Chester Zoo

Two tiny newborn birds are being hand-reared at Chester Zoo after they were rejected by their mum.

The Fischer’s turacos which are native to Kenya, Somalia and Tanzania are being cared for round the clock by the Zoo's curator of birds Andrew Owen.

Andrew even takes the pair home with him and uses tweezers to carefully feed them small pieces of chopped fruit every two hours.

He said:

“Encouraging them to eat does require some patience and a little encouragement but once they’ve got full tummies then they’re usually happy to nod off to sleep.

As youngsters go, other than meal times, they’ve been pretty un-demanding and I’m relieved to say they’ve not been keeping me up at night.

– Andrew Owen, Chester Zoo bird curator
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