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Can Dogs Transmit Ebola?

PARIS - Following the uproar over the killing of an Ebola patient's dog in Spain, experts said on Thursday there was a risk of canines carrying the deadly virus but none that they could infect humans. Excalibur, the dog of an Ebola patient. Credit: Getty Editorial A study published in 2005 pointed to a theoretical risk that dogs could pass the virus to humans through urine, faeces or saliva, but there is no evidence of this ever having happened, virologists said. They recommended caution given the lack of firm data. "The wise move is to... assume they (dogs) do represent a risk to humans," Andrew Easton, a professor at Britain's Warwick University, told AFP. Spanish authorities on...

MADRID - Health authorities on Tuesday ordered the death of the dog owned by a Spanish health worker infected with Ebola in Madrid, triggering a campaign to save him by her husband and animal rights activists. Excalibur the dog. Credit: Associated Press The husband, Javier Limon, who has been placed in quarantine, contacted local media to object to the decision by Madrid's department of health. "They told me that if I didn't give authorisation, they would get a judicial order to enter my home by force and sacrifice the dog," he told El Mundo newspaper. The authorities said in a statement there was a risk the dog could be "a carrier of the virus even without showing symptoms", and that it...

JOHANNESBURG - Thousands marched in Africa and around the world Saturday to pressure governments to do more to stop the poaching industry that many fear is driving rhinos and elephants to the brink of extinction. Credit: Getty Editorial The protests, dubbed the Global March for Elephants and Rhinos, took place in 136 cities and towns across six continents, from Soweto to Nairobi, and Paris to New York and Tokyo. In South Africa, which is struggling to stem a rhino poaching crisis, demonstrators gathered across 17 cities. "We are protesting against the political leaders of the world, who do not have the guts and political will to make changes in their laws," Dex Kotze, one of the march...

SYDNEY - Two great white sharks have been caught and killed off Western Australia, officials said Friday, after an attack in which a young surfer lost parts of both arms. Great White Shark. Credit: Associated Press The capture of the sharks came as a man who witnessed the attack said the 23-year-old surfer involved, Sean Pollard, might have died if he had not received immediate medical attention. Pollard lost one arm as well as the hand on his other arm, and suffered cuts to his leg in the attack off the south coast of Western Australia, reports said. "He's obviously swum about 100 metres with those injuries... it was probably the bravest thing I've ever seen," a witness called Robbie...

PARIS - A survey of over 3,000 species has found that animal numbers have plunged by more than half in just 40 years as Earth's human population has nearly doubled, conservationists said Tuesday. Credit: Getty Creative From 1970 to 2010, there was a 39-percent drop in numbers across a representative sample of land- and sea-dwelling species, while freshwater populations dropped 76 percent, the green group WWF said in its 2014 Living Planet Report. All told, "the number of mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians and fish across the globe is, on average, about half the size it was 40 years ago," it said. The 52-percent decrease confirms mankind is chomping through nature's bounty much faster...