Glancing through the New York Times online this morning, I found an interesting little article by science writer Tara Pope Parker about studies that have shown that some dogs can not only predict cancer, but they can also be responsive to their diabetic owners' drops in blood sugar. Here's how the dogs let their owners know something was wrong:
Among the dog owners, 138, or 65 percent, said their dog had shown a behavioral reaction to at least one of their hypoglycemic episodes. About a third of the animals had reacted to 11 or more events, with 31.9 percent of animals reacting to 11 or more events. The dogs got their owners’ attention by barking and whining, (61.5 percent), licking (49.2 percent), nuzzling (40.6 percent), jumping on top of them (30.4 percent), and/or staring intently at their faces (41.3 percent). A small percentage of the dogs reportedly tremble in fear at the time of a hypoglycemic attack.
Clearly my dogs are not qualified diagnosticians. Muzzy licks, nuzzles, and stares intently at my face all day long. Am I dying? Meanwhile, Roma finds me interesting only when I am carrying a bowl of food or the car keys. Clearly, I'm fine. Hope you are too.