There is no doubt that Britain is a nation of dog lovers. In 2014 there were approximately nine million dogs being kept as pets, but dogs have a bigger role to play in society than just being the family pet, so here we explore how dogs are more than just a man’s best friend.
There is no better example of this than the fact that on the day of the general election the question many people were asking, according to the BBC website, was whether they could take their dogs into the polling station. The answer was that as long as they were on a lead that was acceptable, but it goes to show how much as a nation we value our canine companions. For this reason, there has been an increase in the number of people using services such as dog sitting and dog grooming in Cheltenham as a way of showing their pet how much they are valued. However, some dogs are trained for specific roles and have an important part to play in assisting those who need rescuing or coming to the aid of those who require medical attention.
Search and Rescue Dogs
The recent earthquake in Nepal has demonstrated the amazing and courageous role that dogs are able to play in search and rescue operations, whether it is finding survivors of natural disasters such as an earthquake or avalanche or finding someone who may have become lost and stranded while walking in the areas around the UK. Search and rescue dogs are capable of looking for human scent generally, or they can be used to follow the scent of a particular individual who may be missing. There are also dogs that have been specially trained to look for the scent of those who may have gone missing near or in water.
Medical Detection Dogs
According to the Medical Detection Dogs charity, medical detection dogs can provide an invaluable service to those who suffer from conditions such as diabetes. They are trained to identify the symptoms of low blood sugar and hypoglycaemia in both adults and children and are able to warn them, enabling them to get assistance or medicine. Medical detection dogs can also be used to help other conditions such as allergic reactions, narcolepsy and some forms of seizure.
Even if your dog has not been specifically trained in the way that medical detection and search and rescue dogs have, there is no reason why he cannot still be a hero. Whether you walk him yourself or use a walking service such as that provided by blossoms dog grooming, you never know what situation he might come across where he could be of assistance to you or someone else.
It is worth remembering then that next time you take your dog for a walk he could be a hero, either for you or for someone else, so should be looked after and cherished.