Health

Kicking the Habit for Your Pet

Are you trying to convince a friend or loved to quit smoking? If they won’t do it for themselves, and they won’t do it for you, maybe they’’d be willing to try to kick the habit for their pet.

Researchers at the Henry Ford Health System in Detroit surveyed 3,300 pet owners and found that few smokers realize that secondhand smoke poses a health threat to pets. Nearly one in three then said that would motivate them to try to stop.

Studies show that smoking poses a significant health threat to dogs, cats and birds who inhale secondhand smoke. Cats are particularly vulnerable because carcinogenic compounds in smoke settle on their fur, which they then ingest when  grooming. A smoker’s cat is also twice as likely to develop malignant lymphoma than a cat that lives with non-smokers.

Dogs who live with smokers are more likely to develop cancers in the nose and sinuses, and dogs with short or medium-length noses showed higher rates of lung cancer.

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