Keeping Pets Healthy

first_imgPets ingest pollutants and pesticide residues and breathe in an array of indoor air contaminants just like children do — and since they develop and age seven or more times faster than children, pets develop health problems from exposures much faster. Credit: Hemera CollectionEarthTalk®E – The Environmental MagazineDear EarthTalk: What are some tips for keeping my dogs and cats healthy?                                                                                                                                                                         — Kim Newfield, via e-mailBelieve it or not, our pets may be exposed to more harsh chemicals through the course of their day than we are. Researchers at the non-profit Environmental Working Group (EWG) found that pet dogs and cats were contaminated with 48 of 70 industrial chemicals tested, including 43 chemicals at levels higher than those typically found in people.“Just as children ingest pollutants in tap water, play on lawns with pesticide residues or breathe in an array of indoor air contaminants, so do their pets,” reports EWG. Since they develop and age seven or more times faster than children, pets also develop health problems from exposures much faster, EWG adds.“Average levels of many chemicals were substantially higher in pets than is typical for people, with 2.4 times higher levels of stain- and grease-proof coatings (perfluorochemicals) in dogs, 23 times more fire retardants (PBDEs) in cats, and more than five times the amounts of mercury, compared to average levels in people,” reports the group. Their 2008 study looked at plastics and food packaging chemicals, heavy metals, fire retardants and stain-proofing chemicals in pooled samples of blood and urine from 20 dogs and 37 cats tested at a Virginia veterinary clinic.“For dogs, blood and urine samples were contaminated with 35 chemicals altogether, including 11 carcinogens, 31 chemicals toxic to the reproductive system, and 24 neurotoxins,” adds EWG. This is particularly alarming given that man’s best friend is known to have much higher cancer rates than humans. A 2008 Texas A&M Veterinary Medical Center study found that dogs have 35 times more skin cancer, four times more breast tumors, eight times more bone cancer, and two times more leukemia per capita as humans. And according to researchers from Purdue University, cancer is the second leading cause of death for dogs, with about one in four canines succumbing to some form of the disease. Meanwhile, hyperthyroidism—a condition which many think is on the rise in felines due to chemical exposures—is already a leading cause of illness for older cats.In its Pets for the Environment website, EWG lists dozens of ways for pet owners to ensure that dogs and cats are as safe as possible in this dangerous world we inhabit. Among other tips, EWG recommends choosing pet food without chemical preservatives such as BHA, BHT or ethoxyquin, and looking for organic or free-range ingredients rather than by-products. As for drinking water, EWG suggests running tap water through a reverse osmosis filter—either faucet-mounted or pitcher-based—before it goes into a pet’s bowl to remove common contaminants. Also, replacing old bedding or furniture, especially if it has exposed foam, can prevent pets from ingesting fire retardants. From avoiding non-stick pans and garden pesticides to choosing greener kitty litter and decking material, the list of tips goes on.Taking steps to ensure a safer environment for pets—some 63 percent of U.S. homes have at least one—will mean a safer world for humans, too. EWG concludes that our pets “well may be serving as sentinels for our own health, as they breathe in, ingest or absorb the same chemicals that are in our environments.”CONTACT: EWG Pets for the Environment, www.ewg.org/PetsfortheEnvironmentEarthTalk® is written and edited by Roddy Scheer and Doug Moss and is a registered trademark of E – The Environmental Magazine (www.emagazine.com). Send questions to: [email protected] Subscribe: www.emagazine.com/subscribe. Free Trial Issue: www.emagazine.com/trial.last_img read more

UK PM Johnson, on the mend after COVID-19, faces lockdown conundrum

first_img“That decision is for the prime minister in consultation with his doctors,” Hancock said. “I spoke to him yesterday, he’s on very good form and is clearly recovering.”Lockdown The government’s as yet unpublished strategy for unwinding the lockdown will be heavily scrutinized as investors try to work out which major economy will be worst hit by the most severe public health crisis since the 1918 influenza outbreak.The United Kingdom has the fifth worst official death toll in the world, after the United States, Italy, Spain and France, and government scientists have said that the death rate will only start to decline quickly in a another couple of weeks.Hancock said on Friday that it was too early to lift the lockdown, though economic data indicates Britain’s economy is crumbling under the strain of the lockdown.According to the country’s budget forecasters, the economy could be heading into its deepest recession in more than 300 years even after the finance ministry and the Bank of England rushed out a string of emergency stimulus measures.British retail sales fell by the most on record in March as a surge in food buying for the coronavirus lockdown was dwarfed by a plunge in sales of clothing and most other goods, official figures showed on Friday.Sales volumes plunged by 5.1% in March from February, the sharpest drop since the Office for National Statistics records began in 1996. It was also a bigger fall than the median forecast for a drop of 4.0% in a Reuters poll of economists.”Clearly there is huge uncertainty as to how deep the downturn proves and how long restrictions remain in place, a fall in the region of 25% in GDP over the next few months seems likely,” said Thomas Pugh, an economist with Capital Economics. “He sounded incredible,” US President Donald Trump said on Thursday of how Johnson sounded on a call they had two days earlier. “He was ready to go.””It’s like the old Boris,” Trump said. “He’s doing great.”Johnson’s government, which was slower than European peers to impose a lockdown, has come under fire for its limited testing capacity and for failing to deliver enough personal protective equipment to front-line health workers.The Daily Telegraph newspaper reported that Johnson is planning to return to work as early as Monday, and his health minister, Matt Hancock, described the prime minister as cheerful, ebullient and getting much better. Topics :center_img Prime Minister Boris Johnson faces the biggest conundrum of his premiership as he recuperates from COVID-19: how to lift a lockdown that is destroying swathes of the British economy without triggering a deadly second wave of the outbreak.Johnson, 55, is on the mend at his country residence after spending three nights in intensive care at a London hospital earlier this month with COVID-19 complications. He later said he owed his life to the hospital staff.But as speculation mounts that the prime minister is preparing to return to work, Johnson is under pressure to explain just how and when the world’s fifth largest economy will exit the crippling lockdown.last_img read more

Cricket News Virat Kohli gives a big NO to 100-ball format, says ‘commercial aspects taking over real cricket’

first_imgNew Delhi: Indian skipper Virat Kohli believes that cricket is losing a lot of quality due to the “commercial aspects” which are overshadowing the game and hit out at the 100-ball cricket format proposed by the England Cricket Board. Kohli, who is also the captain of Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) in BCCI’s marquee event the Indian Premier League (IPL) says the schedule for the cricketers are extremely exhausting.“I’m already very… I wouldn’t say frustrated, but sometimes it can get very demanding of you when you have to play so much cricket regularly. I feel somewhere the commercial aspect is taking over the real quality of cricket and that hurts me,” Kohli told the ‘Wisden Cricket Monthly’.ALSO READ: Eng vs Ind 4th Test Preview: Virat Kohli and co eye series equaliserMeanwhile, England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) has decided to start a new 100-ball format which have garnered criticism from all quarters. However, the Virat Kohli has made it clear that he won’t be a part of ‘one more format’.“Obviously for the people involved (ECB) in the whole process and the set-up it will be really exciting but I cannot think of one more format, to be honest,” Kohli said.“Honestly, I don’t want to be a testing sort of a cricketer for any new format. I don’t want to be someone who’s going to be part of that World XI who comes and launches the 100-ball format.”ALSO READ: England vs India 4th Test: Curran, Ali return as hosts announce XIKohli went on to differentiate between the IPL/Big Bash League from the new experiment in 100-ball format.“I love playing the IPL, I love watching the BBL, because you are working towards something, competing against high-quality sides and it gets your competitive juices flowing. That’s what you want as a cricketer. I am all for the leagues, but not to experiment.”The Indian skipper, who missed out on his debut county stint for Surrey due to an injury said that he would love to play county cricket in future.“County cricket always intrigued me. Unfortunately, it couldn’t happen this time but I would love to come again in future,” he said.India face England in the fourth Test match that will be played from Sunday at the Rose Bowl in Southampton. The hosts England currently lead the five-match Test series by 2-1. For all the Latest Sports News News, Cricket News News, Download News Nation Android and iOS Mobile Apps.last_img read more