Saturday, April 18, 2015

A dog cake, novel anatomy lessons, vet nursing cats and oxytocin-infused gazing

Bluey waits for his friends on the track.
Do you have four days and excellent sculpting skills? Then you might be able to make this cake. Although I doubt, having achieved that mean feat, you will want to eat it. In fact if you manage to make this cake you’ll probably dive on top of anyone that walks anywhere near it with a knife.

Mike McCormick is a medical student who used candy to help learn anatomy (of humans) and his Instagram is full of extremely clever, edible anatomy lessons. Veterinary students everywhere could rise to this challenge.

If you’re not into edible anatomy, or you’re trying to be healthy, there’s also the burgeoning field of aKNITomy, where you can purchase a pattern to knit your own simulated dissections of animals, which seems like a much more educational, more human alternative than the high-school science practical classes which often culminate in someone fainting and someone else getting suspended for throwing kidneys. Check out the Facebook page here

Wednesday’s post prompted a lot of discussion (if you’ve not seen it, check it out here), specifically “yes, but my dog eats cat poo”. Well yes, that is common. So common that at least one company has produced one novel solution to prevent canine access to the litterbox.

And on that slightly unsavoury topic, an enterprising pair have invented the world’s first reusabledog waste bag.

This cat has been working as a “vet nurse” in Poland. Interesting interpretation of his behaviour. Extremely cute nonetheless. Probably not a nurse I’d completely trust to recover the pocket pets from anaesthesia though…

Kim and Jan sent this linkfrom the Guardian about research suggesting that dogs and humans experience a surge in oxytocin when they gaze into one another’s eyes.

You can read the original article in Science here. I wonder if facilitating the oxytocin-infused gaze has anything to do with our preference for morphological characteristics of certain breeds? Of course not everyone agrees with the findings, including Dr Clive Wynne who wrote this piece.