World News Roundup: February 24, 2017
Deadly elephant aggression in India, a novel way to detect stress in dogs, and a proven malaria vaccine top this week’s roundup of veterinary news from around the word.
“As Kerala [India] slips into an unprecedented drought, wild animals have started raiding human settlements in search of water and food, endangering lives of people settled in fringe areas of the forest.” Earlier this month, 3 people were killed by elephant herds in separate incidents.
New Heartbeat Sensor Can Help Detect Stress in Dogs (The Japan Times)
A research team at Osaka Prefecture University have developed a new heartbeat sensor that can detect stress in dogs. “Wearable sensors transmit signals from dogs’ hearts to gadgets that allow their owners to determine whether they are relaxed or stressed out,” said one of the researchers, who aims to have a marketable product ready within several years.
New Malaria Vaccine Effective in Clinical Trial (Medical News Today)
“University of Tübingen [Germany] researchers, in collaboration with the biotech company Sanaria Inc., have demonstrated in a clinical trial that a new vaccine for malaria called Sanaria PfSPZ-CVac has been up to 100% effective when assessed at 10 weeks after last dose of vaccine,” according to a report in the latest issue of Nature.
Group Protests Possible Return of Convicted Veterinarian (CTV News Toronto)
Dr. Mahavir Rekhi’s license was suspended for 6 months after he was found guilty of animal abuse. His practice has also been closed since videos surfaced of the veterinarian choking patients, hitting them with clippers, and swinging an anesthetized cat by its legs on the way to surgery. Now, "former clients are worried Skyway Animal Hospital could reopen now that the suspension is over.”
“A poll of 1000 pet owners asked whether they would rush into a burning building or jump into the sea to rescue a pet—and 42% said they would ‘without hesitation.’” What’s more, 25% said they’d “dump their partner if they did not get on with their pet.”
Rare Boa Rediscovered 64 Years Later (ZME Science)
Native to Brazil and possibly the rarest snake in the world, a live nonvenomous tree boa has been seen by scientists for the first time since its discovery in 1953. Says Robert W. Henderson, curator emeritus of herpetology at the Milwaukee Public Museum, “This is an amazing find. Just phenomenal.”
“The human thirst for progress means animals’ natural habitats are increasingly under threat. Francis Perez’s distressing image of a sea turtle entangled in fishnets perfectly captures this tension between nature and its artificial enemy and won First Prize in the World Press Nature Singles category.”