You are probably aware that dogs have a better sense of smell than we do. But, did you know that they can actually smell diseases? That is right, dogs can save your life by sniffing out changes in your body. Pine Street Foundation in California trained dogs to sniff out breast and lung cancer with an 88-97 percent accuracy rate.
Trained alert dogs have been trained to alert people of all sorts of health problems. It is no wonder that we all share a special love of dogs and know how important they are to our lives and in our families. But why do we love dogs so much? There are a lot of answers to this question, and each one is unique for each dog.
Loyalty and friendship carry far beyond just giving them food and shelter. If you have ever known a dog and seen its reaction when you come home or it is reunited with a fellow four-legged friend, you have seen it in action.
There are plenty of examples of dogs showcasing their loyalty to their wonders. Some of the most famous are the dog that would greet its owner at the train station every day after they arrived home from work. But what about a dog that knew her owner so well that when an unfamiliar spot showed up on her skin, the dog potentially saved her owner’s life.
This is the story of what could really be a dermatologists’ best friend.
Lauren Gauthier, a 42-year-old attorney from East Amherst, New York saved a hound pup’s life named Victoria. Lauren rescued Victoria from an animal shelter that was filled with hunting dogs abandoned by their owners.
Lauren, who is devoted to saving abandoned hunting dogs as the founder of Magic’s Mission Beagle and Hound Rescue, Inc., brought Victoria home in October 2016 to join her and her husband, Ben Chatman, and their beagle named Lily. Just like any loving rescue, their bond became unbreakable.
That came to light when Lauren developed a small red lump on her nose but dismissed it as nothing to worry about. She told InsideEdition that she believed it could have just been a pimple or clogged pore located on her right nostril. But, her recently adopted rescue hound Victoria would not let it go, constantly sniffing the spot.
“Whenever I’d sit down on the couch, she’d cuddle next to me and start sniffing the little spot on my nose, then she’d sit and stare at me,” said Lauren to Allure reporters.
Due to Victoria’s persistence and fascination with the spot, Lauren decided that she would go get it checked out just in case it was more than just a facial blemish.
Lauren was shocked when the biopsy revealed that she has basal cell carcinoma. Basal cell carcinoma is a skin cancer that accounts for about 32 percent of cancers globally. Cancer begins in a type of cell within the skin that produces new skin cells as the old ones die off. It often appears as a slightly transparent bump on the skin, though it can take other forms. Basal cell carcinoma occurs most often on areas of the skin that are exposed to the sun, such as your head and neck. According to MayoClinic, most basal cell carcinomas are thought to be caused by long-term exposure to ultraviolet radiation from the sunlight. Lauren believes that her regularly using tanning beds as a teenager could be the reason that she developed skin cancer.
Unchecked, that irritating little bump on her nose could have spread throughout all of her nasal tissue and then into other portions of her face. At that stage, it would require invasive surgery to remove and could cause disfigurement, or even death.
“I’m so grateful to Victoria-as you can imagine, she’s received a lot of treats and hugs,” says Lauren who was left with minor scarring after the cancer was removed.
Her own healthy outcome after a brush with cancer is proof enough that the bond you have with your furry friend can really save your life in many ways.