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From groundhogs kissing to adorable sea otters: 10 must-share photos from July

By: Jaymi Heimbuch on Aug. 1, 2014, 10:09 a.m.
sea otter with paws up

Photo: Jaymi Heimbuch/MNN Flickr Group

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Why sea otters hold their paws up

Speaking of otters! Photos of the Day featuring them were quite popular this month among readers. This sea otter is demonstrating a common behavior. A sea otter's thick coat does a phenomenal job of keeping water away from the skin so the animal can stay warm even in the chilly waters of Alaska. However, not all parts of a sea otter's body has such dense fur, such as the nearly fur-free paws. In order to conserve heat, sea otters keep as much of their body as dry as they can, and this includes keeping their sensitive paws up out of the water as much as possible. While it's a behavior meant for survival, a sea otter can't help but look utterly cute doing it.