Our dogs are great at sniffing and finding things out through it. But what if this talent of theirs turns into a risk for them for developing cancer?

A recent six-year study at Tufts University’s Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine discovered that something as simple and regular as lawn chemicals have the capacity to develop two different kinds of cancer in the canine family. The risk of Canine Malignant Lymphoma (CML), a kind of cancer, raising because of contact with lawn pesticides was as high as 70%.

The Healthy Pets website owner and veterinarian Dr Karen Becker, writes, “Dogs at highest risk for acquiring CML was over 50 pounds and living in homes where pesticides and herbicides were professionally applied, as well as homes where owners used lawn care products containing insect growth regulators (chemical killing agents).”

Another study performed at the Department of Veterinary Clinical Sciences at Purdue University observed that these pesticides and insecticides, used to keep the lawn clean, have a very high potential of causing canine bladder cancer.  “2,4-dichlorophenoxyacetic acid (2,4-D), 4-chloro-2-methylphenoxypropionic acid (MCPP) and/or dicamba.” are the most common ingredients that cause cancer. One should always check the label on such chemicals before buying it and using it.

Since our canine friends love rolling and sniffing around in the lawn so much, they are at high risk of developing cancer. When the study tested the urine of dogs for the research, they found that “Since some dogs from homes that did not use the products also had herbicides in their urine, researchers concluded the wind could carry the chemicals up to 50 feet from the site where they were applied.”

Despite not using the chemicals on your lawn, it is indeed difficult to totally avoid these chemicals to encounter your pets, however, some safety measures can definitely be taken. For example, washing your dog’s feet or the whole body after a walk may help cleanse its body from the pesticides. You need to be cautious about being 50 feet away from your neighbors who use pesticides, especially in spring and fall when its high time for everyone to treat their gardens and lawns.

As a matter of fact, these pesticides also have the risk of causing cancer in humans. Therefore, we should rather avoid using these and embrace mother nature the way she is.

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