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Fresh calls to allow pets in care homes
elderly woman with cat
Estimates suggest more than 140,000 elderly people who move into care homes or sheltered housing are forced to relinquish their pets each year. (stock photo)
Rallies held to help 87-year-old keep his dog
Hundreds of thousands of people have signed a petition urging a Scottish care home to reverse its decision to evict an 87-year-old man unless he relinquishes his dog.

Rallies were held over the weekend (12 February) in Westminster and Edinburgh in protest against Mead Medical Services Ltd and Burnfoot Hall management.

Burnfoot Hall care home in Ecclefechan served Bob Harvey, 87, will a formal notice requiring him to remove his schnauzer dog Darkie by 14 February, or face eviction on 19 April. A petition set up by his close friend Tracey Streit has received nearly 240,000 signatures. A JustGiving page aiming to raise £150,000 for Bob has so far raised just under £30,000.

Bob moved into the care home with his wife nearly four years ago, on the condition that they could keep their dog Darkie. Sadly Bob’s wife was suffering from a terminal illness and died two years ago.

Burnfoot Hall care home reportedly says Darkie is causing trouble and plans are in place to change its policy on pets. Bob has to undergo dialysis three times a week and the requirement to part with his dog has left him “heartbroken, unable to eat or sleep”, according to the petition letter.

Estimates suggest more than 140,000 elderly people who move into care homes or sheltered housing are forced to relinquish their pets each year. Of these, many fail to find new owners and are euthanised. Research shows many owners show visible signs of distress on relinquishing their pets. 

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Mission Rabies 2017 off to a great start

News Story 1
 More than 4,500 dogs have been vaccinated against rabies in one of the first major drives of 2017.

It took just two weeks in January for Mission Rabies to vaccinate 4,575 dogs in the Meru district of Tanzania.

The team set-up vaccination points across the district and followed-up with door-to-door work, checking vaccination cards and giving vaccines to any dogs that had been missed.

Overall, the charity reached 75 per cent of the local dog population, smashing last year's total and comfortably above the required 70 per cent.  

News Shorts
US science association honours leading Pirbright scientist

A leading scientist at The Pirbright Institute has been honoured by the American Association for the Advancement of Science as a 2017-2018 AAAS Alan I. Leshner Leadership Institute Public Engagement Fellow.

Dr Anthony Wilson, group leader for integrative entomology at Pirbright, was chosen from a large number of international applicants, together with 14 other infectious disease researchers from around the world.

In selecting the new Public Engagement Fellows, the AAAS said they had demonstrated, "...leadership and excellence in their research careers and interest in promoting meaningful dialogue between science and society".