Cures for all

If you have read my posts on a regular basis I may appear as insensible to animals or at least those used in research. Those that know me on a personal basis know that this isn't true. Far from me is the idea of wanting to sound apologetic though. I do have to admit that advancing animal research isn't only about benefits to humans it is about benefits to animals as well. An aspect I did not blog about yet. Animals just happen not to read my pages and in the greater scheme of ecosystems and biodiversity to me humans just take priority.

This being said medical advancement based on research has benefited animals and this will continue to be the case. Did you know that in 2007, US pet ownership accounted for  +72 million dogs, +81 million cats, +11 million birds and +7 million horses (source AVMA)?
I can point you to this article that talks to some issues facing pets.  Likewise the UK National Office on Animal Health has a good page about animal medicines. Agriculture and more specifically livestock has also greatly benefited from research. This in turn benefits us as well.

Actually we are a bunch of lucky people, at least for those of us living in well fed, well educated, well homed (you get the picture) countries. Some would just love to have the type of problems or dilemmas we have. Who hasn't lived the pressures of our children towards owning an animal? In comes the aquarium or perhaps the colourful budgie. It might even be a cat or a dog. Some more adventurous will acquire a reptile or a snake -not an endangered species that is. For our children, it could be the beginning towards a career in biology or in veterinary medicine, who knows? Hopefully though will this love for animals in time not turn into radicalism or animal extremism!

It reminds me of the Convention in International Trade of Endangered Species (CITES), which is about regulating trade not about stopping trade, a nuance often lost by those involved with endangered species. Or perhaps not so by those that seek to abolish any kind of animal use? So called flag ship species such as the big cats, whales, elephants, rhinos, apes and monkeys are powerful motivators and people don't hesitate to donate to their causes. It seems certain priorities do get lost in action. We do need to be reminded that non human primates continue to be valuable animal models for research. This very research can also be the basis towards improving animal life. Not just improving life of pets but also farm animals or those in zoo's & aquariums and those that will be re-introduced as a result of in-situ or ex-situ conservation programs.

Once discovered a cure, medication or medical device will serve many purposes and that is what matters most to those that suffer from a disease be they animals or humans. 

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