News Rohan Glynn with his two Dalmations and German Pointer

If you go down to the woods today you’re sure for a big surprise – especially if you have dogs.

Gecko shock for Ebay belt shopper

A gallivanting gecko has turned up safe and well after hitching a 100-mile ride inside an envelope following an internet shopping mix-up.

Circus animal petition nears 20,000 target

Almost 20,000 have signed The Independent’s online petition calling for a ban on wild animals in circuses.

Former adviser attacks circus animals 'failure'

The Government's failure to ban wild animals in circuses has been criticised by a former expert adviser to the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra).

Harvey Locke: These shows can never meet creatures' needs

At any one time the British Veterinary Association (BVA) is dealing with many serious animal welfare issues. Slaughter without stunning, genetic problems in dogs, lameness in cattle, to mention just a few. All of which cause suffering in thousands, if not millions, of individual animals.

Twitter leads to thousands signing circuses petition

A campaign by animal lovers on Twitter has led to thousands of people signing The Independent’s online petition calling for a ban on tigers and lions in circuses.

Swine flu mother dies after coma

A young woman with swine flu who was put in a coma to save her unborn child has died.

Campaign to ban wild circus animals wins huge public support

An overwhelming majority of the public backs a ban on wild animals performing in circuses. A total of 71 per cent favour a ban, with 21 per cent opposed and 7 per cent saying they don't know, according to an opinion poll commissioned by The Independent.

10,000 back <i>Independent</i> circus animals petition

Four days after its launch more than 10,000 people have signed the Independent’s petition calling on the Government to ban circuses from using wild animals.

Professor Donald Broom: Trainers use pain and fear to teach extreme tricks

Elephants are trained to be ridden using a knife pushed into the neck if they do not obey, or when the rider feels at risk

Ministers under pressure over failure to ban circus animals

Government ministers are to be put under pressure in Parliament this week over their failure to bring forward plans to ban wild animals performing in circuses.

Actress gives backing to campaign to ban wild animals performing in circuses

Virginia McKenna, the actress who played the conservationist Joy Adamson in the film ‘Born Free’, has given her backing to The Independent’s campaign to ban wild animals from circuses.

Dr Ros Clubb: Government is out of touch on circus animals

Circuses represent an important traditional form of entertainment and culture but the days when it was acceptable to haul wild animals around in beastwagons to be gawped at and to entertain with unnatural tricks are long gone. Society has moved on, as has our understanding of what animals need.

No 10 blocks plan to ban wild animals performing in circuses

Campaigners' hopes are set to be dashed as Government opts instead for self-regulation

Bookies feel the chill &ndash; 50 years after coming in from the cold

Betting shops became legal in 1961, but now the industry is feeling threatened. Mark Leftly reports

Mass land-and-sea search to recover bodies still missing from tsunami

Japan will send nearly 25,000 soldiers backed by boats and aircraft into its disaster zone today on an intensive land-and-sea mission to recover the bodies of those killed by last month's earthquake and tsunami.

News
news

Emergency call 'started off dumb, but got pretty serious'

News
people

Britain First criticised for using actress's memory to draw attention to their 'hate-filled home page'

Arts and Entertainment
JK Rowling is releasing a new Harry Potter story about Dolores Umbridge
arts + entsJK Rowling to publish new story set in wizard's world for Halloween
Arts and Entertainment
Benedict Cumberbatch has refused to deny his involvement in the upcoming new Star Wars film
filmBenedict Cumberbatch reignites those Star Wars rumours
News
Russell Brand was in typically combative form during his promotional interview with Newsnight's Evan Davis
people

Thought you'd seen it all after the Jeremy Paxman interview?

Arts and Entertainment
On The Apprentice, “serious” left the room many moons ago and yet still we watch
tv

Greatest mystery about the hit BBC1 show is how it continues to be made at all, writes Grace Dent

Life and Style
tech

Voices
Funds raised from the sale of poppies help the members of the armed forces with financial difficulties
voicesLindsey German: The best way of protecting soldiers is to stop sending them into conflicts
Arts and Entertainment
A scene from David Ayer's 'Fury'
film

"History is violent," says the US Army tank commander Don "Wardaddy" Collier

News
The Edge and his wife, Morleigh Steinberg, at the Academy Awards in 2014
peopleGuitarist faces protests over plan to build mansions in Malibu
Career Services

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Independent Travel
Vietnam & Cambodia
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Bruges
India & Nepal
Japan
Berlin, Dresden, Meissen & Colditz
Prices correct as of 17 October 2014
Wilko Johnson, now the bad news: musician splits with manager after police investigate assault claims

Wilko Johnson, now the bad news

Former Dr Feelgood splits with manager after police investigate assault claims
Mark Udall: The Democrat Senator with a fight on his hands ahead of the US midterm elections

Mark Udall: The Democrat Senator with a fight on his hands

The Senator for Colorado is for gay rights, for abortion rights – and in the Republicans’ sights as they threaten to take control of the Senate next month
New discoveries show more contact between far-flung prehistoric humans than had been thought

New discoveries show more contact between far-flung prehistoric humans than had been thought

Evidence found of contact between Easter Islanders and South America
Cerys Matthews reveals how her uncle taped 150 interviews for a biography of Dylan Thomas

Cerys Matthews on Dylan Thomas

The singer reveals how her uncle taped 150 interviews for a biography of the famous Welsh poet
DIY is not fun and we've finally realised this as a nation

Homebase closures: 'DIY is not fun'

Homebase has announced the closure of one in four of its stores. Nick Harding, who never did know his awl from his elbow, is glad to see the back of DIY
The Battle of the Five Armies: Air New Zealand releases new Hobbit-inspired in-flight video

Air New Zealand's wizard in-flight video

The airline has released a new Hobbit-inspired clip dubbed "The most epic safety video ever made"
Pumpkin spice is the flavour of the month - but can you stomach the sweetness?

Pumpkin spice is the flavour of the month

The combination of cinnamon, clove, nutmeg (and no actual pumpkin), now flavours everything from lattes to cream cheese in the US
11 best sonic skincare brushes

11 best sonic skincare brushes

Forget the flannel - take skincare to the next level by using your favourite cleanser with a sonic facial brush
Paul Scholes column: I'm not worried about Manchester United's defence - Chelsea test can be the making of Phil Jones and Marcos Rojo

Paul Scholes column

I'm not worried about Manchester United's defence - Chelsea test can be the making of Jones and Rojo
Frank Warren: Boxing has its problems but in all my time I've never seen a crooked fight

Frank Warren: Boxing has its problems but in all my time I've never seen a crooked fight

While other sports are stalked by corruption, we are an easy target for the critics
Jamie Roberts exclusive interview: 'I'm a man of my word – I'll stay in Paris'

Jamie Roberts: 'I'm a man of my word – I'll stay in Paris'

Wales centre says he’s not coming home but is looking to establish himself at Racing Métro
How could three tourists have been battered within an inch of their lives by a burglar in a plush London hotel?

A crime that reveals London's dark heart

How could three tourists have been battered within an inch of their lives by a burglar in a plush London hotel?
Meet 'Porridge' and 'Vampire': Chinese state TV is offering advice for citizens picking a Western moniker

Lost in translation: Western monikers

Chinese state TV is offering advice for citizens picking a Western moniker. Simon Usborne, who met a 'Porridge' and a 'Vampire' while in China, can see the problem
Handy hacks that make life easier: New book reveals how to rid your inbox of spam, protect your passwords and amplify your iPhone

Handy hacks that make life easier

New book reveals how to rid your email inbox of spam, protect your passwords and amplify your iPhone with a loo-roll
KidZania lets children try their hands at being a firefighter, doctor or factory worker for the day

KidZania: It's a small world

The new 'educational entertainment experience' in London's Shepherd's Bush will allow children to try out the jobs that are usually undertaken by adults, including firefighter, doctor or factory worker