Weekly News Roundup 8/31—9/6


California passes bill to end animal testing for cosmetics

Lawmakers in California have passed a bill that bans animal testing for cosmetics. The California Cruelty-Free Cosmetics Act (SB 1249), which was passed unanimously by the General Assembly last week with a vote of 80–0, will ban the sale of products in the state that have been tested on animals, or contain ingredients that have been tested on animal. “I’m proud of California lawmakers for moving science, industry, and ethics forward today. Cruelty-free cosmetics are good for business, safe for humans, and don’t harm animals,” said Senator Kathleen Galgiani (D-Stockton) who authored the bill. The bill now goes to Governor Jerry Brown for a signature, and if he signs it, it will go into effect January 1, 2020, making California the first state in the nation to institute such a ban.

Lioness gives birth to world’s first test-tube cubs

Scientists say that the birth of the world’s first test-tube lion cubs could mark an incredible breakthrough for saving highly endangered big cats. The news follows a lioness giving birth to two cubs in South Africa, a male and a female, created through artificial insemination. The success of the process could offer hope for saving species such as tigers and snow leopards, which are both threatened by extinction, say researchers. The pioneering research was carried out by a team of experts at the University of Pretoria in Pretoria, South Africa, who conducted the in vitro fertilization. They harvested the sperm of a male lion, which was placed inside the lioness. She gave birth to two healthy cubs three and a half months later. Both cubs, who were born at the Ukutulu Game Reserve and Conservation Centre, have been given a clean bill of health.

Cannabidiol found to reduce frequency of dog seizures in CSU study

Recent studies at Colorado State University’s (CSU) James L. Voss Veterinary Teaching Hospital in Fort Collins, Colorado, overseen by Stephanie McGrath, MS, DVM, DACVIM (Neurology), have found the use of cannabidiol (CBD) to be beneficial for dogs with epilepsy. CBD has been used in treatments for anxiety and chronic pain, among other conditions. Many people using it for their own ailments called McGrath and other doctors, wondering if it could have the same effect on pets. In an email to CSU student newspaper The Rocky Mountain Collegian, McGrath wrote that this question became a popular one at her office after cannabis was legalized in Colorado. “The more I checked into the research, I realized that there were no scientific studies to support, or dispute, its use in animals,” McGrath wrote. “I started thinking about the prospect of doing the research here at CSU.”

Woman says dog died saving family from bear who broke into her house

A woman in Black Mountain, North Carolina, is crediting her family’s tiny dog with saving her life and the lives of her two children from a bear. Pickles, a toy poodle with curly black fur, died in what Tiffany Merrill believes was an attempt to protect his human family. Early Friday morning, Merrill opened the door of her home in the Blue Ridge Mountains to let Pickles out. Not long afterward, a bear walked right in. “I would say he was about 150 to 200 pounds—very aggressive [and] not scared at all,” she told reporters. She said she didn’t want to run to her children because she feared the bear would follow her to them. So she jumped behind the couch and started shouting to her kids to shut their bedroom doors. She said the bear was “charging after her”—until Pickles showed up.

One in three Britons do less than two hours research when buying a puppy

One in three people in Great Britain does less than two hours’ research when buying a puppy, a new poll has found. The poll of dog owners found that 12% of people pay for their puppy before they’ve even seen it. The results also revealed that nearly a third of puppies bought online die or get sick within their first year, leading to warnings by the Kennel Club of Great Britain that puppies are being put at risk by a culture of “instant gratification.” The survey of 2,176 dog owners comes after the British government announced plans last month to ban the sale of puppies and kittens by pet shops and other commercial dealers.