Weekly News Roundup 9/13 to 9/19

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Dogs in Utah infected with bacterial disease that can spread to humans, officials say

More than a dozen dogs in a Utah city are infected with Leptospirosis, a potentially deadly bacterial disease that can spread to humans. There have been at least 13 confirmed cases of Leptospirosis in dogs in St. George, Utah. Ten of the cases involve dogs being treated at local Red Hills Animal Hospital, while the three remaining cases are at other veterinary facilities in the area. Veterinarians think an infected dog, possibly from Arizona, who stayed at a local boarding center may have spread the illness to other dogs. However, the source of the infection has not been confirmed. . . . more

Texas A&M researchers quietly bred sick dogs in hopes of finding human muscular dystrophy cure

A colony of golden retrievers and Labrador mixes lives in an unmarked building at Texas A&M University. The building looks like a pristine dog pound, with aisles of bare-metal kennels and slatted floors. The healthy dogs jump and bark loudly, pushing their cold, wet noses between the bars of their cages in sterile, white rooms. The sick dogs are quiet. Their location is a secret. University officials say the strict confidentiality shields the dogs and their caretakers from overzealous activists. But animal welfare groups say the dogs are the ones who need protection from the university. The dogs live on campus because researchers at Texas A&M use them to study Duchenne muscular dystrophy—a degenerative disease that’s terminal, primarily for young boys. University scientists are seeking a cure, or at least a meaningful treatment to lengthen lives. . . . more

Cancer-sniffing dogs: How canine scent detection could transform human medicine

Human cancers are devastating for many families throughout the world. According to the American Cancer Society, the most common cancers diagnosed in men are prostate, lung, and colorectal cancers. Women experience breast, lung, and colorectal cancers more than any other type, with breast cancer accounting for 30% of new cases. A total of 1.8 million new cancer cases of all types and nearly 607,000 deaths from cancer are expected to occur in the US in 2019. As these statistics reveal, there is a compelling need to utilize early screening strategies and novel approaches for early detection. And there is increasing evidence that dogs may have a significant role to play in the early diagnosis of human cancer. . . . more

Texas Tech to break ground on veterinary school facilities

Texas Tech University will host a groundbreaking ceremony on Thursday to mark the beginning of construction on facilities for its prospective veterinary school, despite efforts by opponents to derail it. The Texas Tech University School of Veterinary Medicine aims to enroll 60 students in fall 2021, and grow to become a program of 240 veterinary students within four years. Development costs are anticipated to total $90 million. The program’s operational budget is estimated to hover around $20 million. If all goes as planned, the school will open as the nation’s 31st veterinary program in the US. It will serve as a second option for veterinary education in Texas, which has been home to Texas A&M University College of Veterinary Medical and Biomedical Science for more than century. . . . more

23 tweets that sum up the difference between cat people and dog people

The extrovert versus introvert debate has nothing on cat people versus dog people. Your pet preference when it comes to cats and dogs could imply a lot about your personality. Research shows dog people tend to be outgoing, conscientious, rule followers. Those who are cat lovers tend to be more quiet, sensitive, and nonconformist. Maybe you buy that or maybe you don’t. But whether your loyalty lies in one camp or the other, you’ll likely laugh at what Twitter has to say about it. . . . more