This week: A service dog summits Mount Rainier, a cat door that prevents cats from bringing home dead things, and a cure for HIV—in mice.
We’ve entered the peak moving season in the US. On average, more than 40 million people move each year in the United States, with an estimated 80% of those moves occurring between April and September. And, according to an oft-quoted study on pet relinquishment at US animal shelters, the number one reason pet owners give for relinquishing pets is moving (7%). Does that mean we’ve also entered the peak season for pet relinquishment?
Fifteen percent of unused human medication gets flushed down the toilet. But only about 8% of pet medications get flushed. So, are veterinarians doing a better job of educating their clients on how to properly dispose of unused medication than physicians? Maybe, but it’s still not good enough.
Even responsible pet owners do it all the time.They’ll take their dog for a walk in the woods and won’t bother picking up his feces, an oversight they’d never consider on a walk around the neighborhood. Maybe they think, “Hey, it’s the woods, nobody’s going to step in it.” Or, “Hey, it’ll decompose and help fertilize the ground.” Or, “Hey, bears go in the woods and nobody picks up their poop. What’s the difference?”
Raw food diets are rooted in the notion that dogs and cats are carnivores who crave protein and evolved to eat meat. But is meat what they really want to eat? Maybe only if it tastes good. A new study shows that when food is altered to remove the appetizing taste, dogs and cats will pass up protein in favor of other macronutrients. Specifically, dogs prefer fat, and cats like carbs.
This week: Man bites dog, cat wins lawsuit, and monkeys get cloned
If you’re a veterinary professional, empathy for animals could be hardwired into your DNA, according to a new study by researchers at the University of Edinburgh’s Roslin Institute and Scotland’s Rural College (SRUC). And not just veterinary professionals—the study, published in the journal Animals,showed that people who display a greater-than-average compassion for animals are genetically different.
This week: A surprising new survey reveals the type of pet who makes kids happiest, service dogs who wash out of basic training are available to good homes, and the Paris Aquarium offers a toilet-free alternative to getting rid of unwanted goldfish.
Medical marijuana is legal in 29 states and in Washington, DC. Legal for people, that is, not pets. As far as the medicinal benefits of marijuana for pets go, the jury is still out.
As 2019 draws to a close and we look back over the year that was, NEWStat put together a list of the most popular news stories we published over the last 12 months.