Weekly News Roundup 1/5 – 1/11/18


Feline wildfire victim’s paw healed with fish skin bandage

When a 5-month-old mountain lion cub whose paws were scorched during the California wildfires was brought into a Department of Fish and Wildlife facility in Ventura County a few weeks back, he got some unexpected out-of-the-box treatment: Jamie Peyton, DVM and chief of the Integrative Medicine Service at the University of California Davis School of Veterinary Medicine treated the cub’s paws with a salve made of honey, olive oil, coconut oil and beeswax, then covered one paw with tilapia skin as a temporary bandage. Peyton got the idea from a team using fish skin wrapping to heal human burn patients in Brazil,and says it has potential as a treatment for companion animals.

“We named the dog Indiana.”

Dogs are trained to sniff out bombs, drugs and ivory. So why not train them to sniff out stolen artifacts? Researchers at the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology have created the K-9 Artifact Finders research program in the hopes of teaching dogs to do exactly that. Scientists hope that by training dogs to recognize odors associated with ancient pottery samples from Syria and Iraq, war-torn countries that have seen significant looting of archaeological sites, they’ll be able to detect smugglers trying to sneak stolen artifacts into the United States.

New anti-shedding “onesie” for dogs could give the cone of shame some competition

Fed up with dog hair and dander all over everything? A California company claims their new Shed Defender reduces shedding while helping soothe anxious dogs and protecting their skin. That makes it a potential replacement for the “cone of shame” used to keep pets from licking or scratching at stitches. The one-piece leotard, essentially a onesie for dogs, comes with a zipper that runs from chest to tail for bathroom breaks and a portion of sales are donated to animal shelters.

AKC adds two new breeds

The American Kennel Club (AKC) officially recognized 2 new breeds last week. The first is a spirited Dutch duck-luring dog called the Nederlandse kooikerhondje (we can’t pronounce it, either). The breed goes back hundreds of years in Holland and the smallish, brown-and-white spaniel-style dogs can be seen in some Dutch Old Master paintings. The second is the grand basset griffon Vendeen (GBGV for short), one of a number of long, low-to-the-ground basset breeds that go back centuries in Europe. They’re the first breeds to be added to the AKC register since 2016, but they still have a wait before they can vie for the big prize; they won’t eligible to compete at the Westminster Kennel Club show until next year.