Are we making the animals around us fat? Obesity rates among people worldwide have soared over the last several decades -- but it turns out that humans aren't the only ones packing on the pounds. Find this story -- as well as lonely turtles, piggybacking polar bears, oysters taking back their shells -- and more in The Week in Animal News.
Fat Cats (and Dogs)
According to a recent study from the University of Alabama, many animals that spend time living around humans are more prone to becoming overweight -- and researchers aren't entirely sure why.
David Allison, who studies obesity at the UA Birmingham, discovered an inexplicable trend of weight gain in small primates kept in the the university's laboratory. In hopes of learning more about the phenomenon, Allison compared his findings with 24 other data samples collected for animals ranging from domesticated dogs and cats to feral rats and chimpanzees used for research -- and what it pointed to was quite troubling. Animals are getting fatter, just like we are.
Photo: Mairi Beautyman