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2012's Animals of the Year

  An alpine marmot reaches upwards for an embrace in Austria

Another amazing pirate cat
 A clear rival to Spangles' title of 'most awesome cat-dressed-as-a-pirate of 2012' poses with his owner during a cat exhibition in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan in October
Baby panda gnaws its basket
 This little fella was pictured enjoying some New Year's gifts at Ya'an Bifengxia Base in China at the beginning of 2012
 This adorable baby panda was pictured while visiting the vets at San Diego Zoo in September
 A bear enjoys a relaxing bath on a hot day at the Bavarian Forest National Park in Germany
 A stag wears a crown of leaves and bracken during deer rutting season in Richmond Park, south west London in October
 A terrier models a piece of 'dog architecture', designed especially for haute couture canines by Japanese designers
 A tiny dormouse, which was nursed back to health after falling out of its nest in Kent, southeast England, is pictured perching on the tip of a human finger in October
An Uighur man takes a nap as his goat interrupts the picture (otherwise known as 'photobombing') in Xinjiant Uighur Autonomous Region, China
 Two prairie dogs share a quick kiss in Prague Zoo
 Mitik, an orphaned walrus calf, is pictured in Coney Island Aquarium, New York after being rescued following Superstorm
 Two Chinese monkeys snapped adopting a rather, erm, sensual pose ahead of Valentine's Day
  Kelly the orangutan strikes a pose in a bid to get peanuts off visitors to Houston Zoo in November.
 A crane approaches Vladmir Putin, as the Russian President prepares to lead a flock of the birds in flight in a light aircraft in northern Siberia
  This tiger cub was pictured looking awfully lonely in its nursery room in Shanghai Zoo in October.
Spangles the cross-eyed cat
 This adorable cross-eyed cat was pictured posing in one of his many costumes at his home in South Carolina, USA in September.
Surf Dog 2012!
 A dog catches a wave during the annual Surf City Surf Dog contest in Huntington Beach, California
Surprised macaque
  A Japanese macaque (or snow monkey) looks a little surprised after bathing in the famous hot springs at Jigokudani (Hell's Valley) in Nagano Province, Japan
The baby kangaroo and baby wombat who became best buddies

An orphaned kangaroo joey called Anzac and baby wombat named Peggy are pictured enjoying some quality time together in July after becoming best friends at their rescue centre in Victoria, Australia.
The burrowing owl who was called 'Usain Bob' after his pre-Olympic dash
A burrowing owl named Bob (or 'Usain Bob', as he was later nicknamed) is pictured taking on a 100 centimetre sprint at ZSL London Zoo ahead of the 2012 Olympic Games in the city in July

A baby white-handed gibbon appears to show off some impressive dance moves in its enclosure in Thailand in October

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