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First large-scale study of diabetic alert dogs published
Medical alert dog Magic with handler Claire.
Detection dogs can 'significantly improve' quality of life for diabetic owners 

Specially trained alert dogs can detect 83 per cent of hypoglycaemic episodes in patients with diabetes, according to new research.

In the first large-scale study of its kind, researchers from the University of Bristol and the charity Medical Detection Dogs found that alert dogs have the potential to significantly improve quality of life for people with type 1 diabetes.

The team studied 27 trained glycaemia alert dogs, whose owners supplied six to 12 weeks’ worth of blood records – equating to more than 4,000 hypo- and hyper-glycaemic episodes – detailing each time the dog alerted.

Commenting on the results, which were published in PLOS ONE, Dr Nicola Rooney said: “Our research shows a dog’s effectiveness is affected by the individual dog and its connection with its human partner.

“Since the usage of such dogs is growing, it’s important that any dogs used for these purposes are professionally trained, matched and monitored by professional organisations like Medical Detection Dogs.  It’s also vital that research continues both to assess true efficacy and determine ways to optimise their performance.”

Medical Detection Dogs trains pet dogs to show alerting behaviours in response to the odour produced by human disease. In diabetic patients, dogs will alert when their owners’ blood sugar level falls too low, allowing them to take the appropriate action.

Image © Trevor Martin


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Webinar to explore the meaning of veterinary leadership

News Story 1
 The WSAVA has announced a free webinar exploring the meaning of veterinary leadership in the 21st century.

Taking place at noon on Tuesday, October 19, the webinar will explore the role of veterinary professionals in leading on animal welfare, the leadership competencies required of all veterinary professionals, and the effects of leadership style on teams.

The webinar, which ends with a Q&A session, will be moderated be WSAVA President Dr Siraya Chunekamrai and led by Veterinary Management Group President Richard Casey. For more information and to access the event, click here

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News Shorts
Horiba announces veterinary haematology webinar

Horiba Medical has announced a free webinar providing practical insight on best practice in veterinary haematology. Entitled 'In practice haematology - Beyond the pale!' the webinar will be presented by Ronnie Barron from the University of Glasgow Veterinary School.

Ronnie's presentation, which will conclude with a Q&A session, will look at QC and artefacts of sample quality and review the effects of different pathologies. Using images, photomicrographs and video links, he will also explain the techniques and equipment needed to complement analytical automation to confirm results quality.

The webinar takes place on Thursday, October 28 (7.30-9pm). For more details and to register, click here.