Saturday, April 26, 2014

The Race to Make Your Life Be Better. Will it be a Robot OR Your Pet?

Shay, my sisters dog was spayed on Thursday.
Taken this morning..

I have a few crazy predictions to make.

1. The workforce is going to become more and more heavily robotized. Think I'm wrong about this one? Read the Wall Street Journals article on "Why the Rise of the Robot Workforce is a Good Thing." Robot's  now clean our floors, assemble our gadgets, perform our most invasive and complicated surgeries, answer our customer service phone calls, predict our weather, perform search and rescues, investigate our crime scenes and bombs, and beat us at almost every game imaginable. The constant search for cheaper goods and services to maintain our bank accounts and keep our businesses competitive with the workforce in China is costing us human jobs and a greater dependency on technology.

2. The keys to unlocking the mystery of science and medicine will increasingly be found in the creatures and gifts that nature has already provided us. IF, we don't distance ourselves or destroy the keys in our quest to decimate the finite natural resources this planet provides us.

Isn't it odd that as we become more dependent on machines our dependency on animals to assist us in greater capacities becomes more evident.

Lucy, post-op cruciate surgery.
Not exactly a therapy dog but she keeps her girls happy and active.

Animals assist us in many ways. Let me give you a few examples;
  • Prison Pet Partnership Program. Started in 1981 by Sister Pauline, a nun, and Dr. Bustad, a veterinarian, their dream was to rehabilitate inmates by fostering an environment where the human-animal bond could be developed. The Washington State Department of Corrections created this innovative program that has led to the successful training of over 700 dogs that have been trained by inmates to assist as service, seizure, and therapy dogs. Many other similiar programs can now be found around the country. Most take dogs from the euthanasia row and are placed with inmates who learn that love is a two way street, where kindness, patience, compassion are paid back. Which of us don't already know that the love and affection of our pets isn't therapeutic?
  • Seizure dogs tell us when a seizure is about to happen AND they can get help if one does happen. Some therapy dogs help us monitor diabetes. Others can detect cancer. Find missing people, buried people, and assist in disaster responses of almost all types. Animals provide us with a reason to get  up in the morning. They keep us happier, laughing and living a longer, safer, more secure life.
  • They make us happy, lower blood pressure, keep us more active, more engaged in our community, help our hearts (literally and figuratively), they help us live longer.
  • For people with autism, ADHD, depression, illness, cancer, chronic pain and disease, they bring a new dimension to our quality of life.
  • Our food supply, ability to survive in almost every environment and place in he world is intimately tied to our dependence on animals. 
Levi, who keeps his parents looking forward and fills their lives with joy.
He has idiopathic epilepsy, and they do an amazing job of managing it.
Even those pups who aren't perfect keep us feeling a sense of purpose.

Here is a story I just found on how our pets are improving our lives, helping us maintain our environment and protect our food supply..Add this to the list..

Barking up the wrong bee: Meet the dog trained to sniff out killer disease that wipes out hives… and he has his own beekeeping suit to protect him from stings

  • Bazz the black labrador has been trained by beekeeper Josh Kennett
  • He can detect by smell a killer bee disease called American foulbrood 
  • The dog kept being stung so Mr Kennett made it a special suit 

Bazz the black labrador was specially trained by beekeeper Josh Kennett to detect by smell a killer bee disease called American foulbrood.

But Mr Kennett was forced to design him his own beekeepers suit after he kept getting stung while saving the buzzing insects.
Bazz the black labrador (pictured in his special suit) has been trained by beekeeper Josh Kennett
Bazz the black labrador (pictured in his special suit) has been trained by beekeeper Josh Kennett
A beekeeping dog is creating a buzz with a special outfit designed to protect him from stings
A beekeeping dog is creating a buzz with a special outfit designed to protect him from stings
Now, the dog has to suit up every time he goes out to the hives.
The beekeeper, from Tintinara in South Australia, created the incredible suit after a long process of trial and error.
Mr Kennett said: 'The process of training Bazz and developing the suit has been an attempt to find a better way of controlling American foulbrood disease.


'There is no cure for the disease .
Josh Kennett created the special suit
Josh Kennett created the special suit
'Detection and quarantine processes are essential to save our bees.
'I realised that Bazz was able to sniff out the disease, and save thousands of bees - but he didn’t like being around them too much when he was getting stung.
'So I’ve tried to develop a suit the dog can wear and hopefully avoid being stung.'
The suit is created to protect the dog as it attempts to detect the devastating disease which wipes out thousands of beehives every year.
The fatal Paenibacillus larvae caused by the infection are usually only visible under high-magnification microscope, but thanks to Bazz’s mesh protected nose, that’s not necessary.
The dare-devil dog is protected from bee attack to let him get close enough to sniff out the hives.
After a lengthy training regime Bazz was ready to take on the challenge and began detecting the disease.
Mr Kennett said: 'We’ve now proven the concept, he can find the infected hives.
'The only challenge now is getting the dog comfortable with the suit. It’s hard to change a dog’s habits overnight.
'To fully cover a dog up and expect it to do the same thing, it takes time to change how he behaves and to get used to that suit.
'But he’s a quick learner and he’s never let us down before.'


American Foulbrood is caused by a spore forming bacterium called Paenibacillus larvae. 
These spores are the infective stage of the disease and infection begins when food contaminated with spores are fed to larvae by the nurse bees.  
Once in the gut of the larva the spores germinate, bateria move into the larval tissues, where they multiply enormously. 
American Foulbrood is caused by a spore forming bacterium called Paenibacillus larvae
American Foulbrood is caused by a spore forming bacterium called Paenibacillus larvae
Infected larvae normally die after the cell is sealed and millions of infective spores form in their remains. 
Spores are very resistant to extremes of heat and cold and to many disinfectants.
The most common method of transmission from infected hive to healthy hive is the beekeeper. 
The spores can easily transferred, if frames of honey or brood are moved between hives, or if other contaminated equipment is used. 
However, robbing by adult bees of dead or dying infected colonies is also an important mode of transmission. If left to run its course, all colonies infected with AFB will eventually die from the disease.
All infected colonies are normally destroyed. 
The first stage is to destroy the adult bees and brood combs by burning, then the hives and any appliances are sterilised by scorching with a blow lamp. 

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Shay, being carried into the house by my dear husband Joe,
 from being spayed.

SO, here is my prediction.
If we don't start paying attention to our world, the unique responsibility we have to our planet and our fellow inhabitants, we are certainly going to jeopardize our own species and affect our own quality of life along the way to our own extinction.

History has shown us that our dependence on horses, camels, and elephants provided transportation, dogs protection, cats internal pest control and all cumulatively still provide immense human companionship. Could your pig be your next heart? Could your dolphin be your next anti-terrorist detection device? Could that tiny insect in the disappearing Amazon be the key to curing cancer?

I guess we won't know if we don't open our eyes and hearts to the possibility?

Charlie, who looks a bit bored as we drive to work.

For more information on why are honeybees so important please read the Mother Nature Network article.

For more information on Pet Prison Programs please see;
Petfinders Prison Dog Program article.
4 Paws for Ability. They provide service dogs to children.
Mother Nature Network. prisoners save shelter dogs from death row.

For other stories about pets improving human lives, please see;
WebMD, 28 ways pets can improve  your health.

Cooper and his little sister Rella.
They are the most amusing pair.
There is no room for anything outside of giddy play when they are around.

For information on the types of skills service/therapy dogs perform please see;
Service Dogs for Independence

Loon and Coot, the Jarrettsville Vet resident cats.
They have a knack for finding the clients who need a little pick me up and
jumping on top of them for a forced snuggle session.

For more information on how animals improve our lives please visit;
Web MD, 28 ways pets improve your health.

If you have a pet question, a fortune to foresee about anything animal related, or if you want to share anything about your favorite pet you can meet a whole bunch of us pet fanatics at It is free to use and a wealth of animal information.

You can also find me on Twitter @FreePetAdvice, or come by the clinic and give the pups a hug in person. We are almost always under the Jarrettsville Vet roof.

1 comment:

  1. I am not a fan of most technology,I bring my cell when I absolutely must for business reasons,grow my own fruits and vegs in the summer, to me it is sad that this teenage generation have no social skills at all, they can text like a boss,FB and Tweet like bosses too, but cannot interact face to face, they are clueless,and LIVE for the adoration of "likes" to the clinically insane amount of pictures they take of themselves themselves...between the genetically modified crops,the remote control for every conceivable gadget,the sheer laziness of society, I am ready to opt out...give me my dogs,my gardens, and a stack of good books and I am content not to partake in the tech savvy world...