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Stop smoking for Fido's sake

February 9, 2009 |  4:00 pm

Dog1Quitting smoking is tough. But if smokers won't do it for their own good, or the benefit of family members, some may do it for their pets, say the authors of a study published today in the journal Tobacco Control.

Secondhand smoke is as dangerous for pets as it is for the non-smoking people who live with smokers. Non-smokers who live with smokers have to worry about the risk of lung cancer and respiratory diseases. But even dogs and cats exposed to secondhand smoke have an increased risk of lung cancer, allergies, eye and skin diseases and respiratory problems. Few smokers realize the health impact on their pets, however, said the authors of the study.

The researchers, from the Center for Health Promotion and Disease Prevention at the Henry Ford Health System in Detroit, conducted an online survey of 3,300 people, 1 in 5 of whom were smokers and 1 in 4 of whom lived with a smoker. More than one-quarter of the smokers said that knowing that smoking was bad for their pets would motivate them to give it up. Among nonsmokers who lived with smokers, 16% said such knowledge would prompt them to ask their partners to quit. Almost 20% of the smokers and 40% of the nonsmokers said they would not allow smoking inside the house if it imperiled their pets.

The study raises the possibility that smoking cessation campaigns may work better if they were targeted to pets' health. As the researchers noted: "Pet owners in the U.S. are very devoted to their pets."

-- Shari Roan

Photo credit: Lisa Maree Williams / Getty Images

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Comments (7)

Anti-smokers commit scientific fraud! The real issue is ANTI-SMOKER SCIENTIFIC FRAUD, not "freedom versus health." More than 50 studies show that human papillomaviruses cause over ten times more lung cancers than they pretend are caused by secondhand smoke. Passive smokers are more likely to have been exposed to this virus, so the anti-smokers' studies, which are all based on nothing but lifestyle questionnaires, have been cynically DESIGNED to falsely blame passive smoking for all those extra lung cancers that are really caused by HPV.

The anti-smokers have committed the same type of fraud with every disease they blame on smoking and passive smoking, as well as ignoring other types of evidence that proves they are lying, such as the fact that the death rates from asthma have more than doubled since their movement began.

The anti-smokers lie that smoking bans supposedly cause "immediate, dramatic" declines in the number of heart attack admissions. But in the Pueblo study, the death rates from acute MI actually increased in the year after the ban, while they were boasting that the number of admissions declined! This suggests that people were dying because they weren’t admitted to hospitals when they should have been! In the Indiana study, they exploited an anomalous spike in acute MIs during the "before" part of the study, to make the "after" part look better! And in the Helena study, the death rates from acute MI (as opposed to hospital admissions which were the endpoint of the study) were nearly identical in 2001 (before the ban) and 2002 (the year of the ban), and reached their lowest point in 2003, the year after the smoking ban was repealed.

The government has no right to restrict peoples' liberty without a compelling justification. The anti-smokers have no such justification, so THEY COMMITTED SCIENTIFIC FRAUD TO DECEIVE THE PUBLIC.

And it's no surprise that the filth lie about animals, too.

You got to be kidding me?????????????? Will you anti-smoking Nazi's stop at nothing???? You live in one of the most polluted cities in North America. You all insist on driving everywhere, tying up freeways, cars continuously billowing out smoke and all you ever try to do is blame smokers for all the ills of the world.

Fortunately for me I don't smoke, but maybe I can use this bit of information to get that darn Poodle to quit lighting up! (Just kidding people).

Well isn't this just dandy news? Now the PETA weirdo's and Tree Hugger types have more ammunition to foist their viewpoints onto others. Perhaps now they can use their Gestapo tactics to try and save the dogs from owners who were kind enough to give the little creatures a home rather than 'putting them down.'

Although now, if laws are created to harass the pet owners, putting Fido down early might be an easier option than getting that smoking monkey off your back.

You have GOT to be kidding!

Many years ago I was a heavy smoker. My dog would sit on my bed with me at night and at my side when I was home during the day. By the time she was 9 years old, she had lung cancer and suffered greatly. I had a wonderful vet, who removed one of her lobes, and in fact used her as an example of this issue on his extensive teaching tours. Inevitably her health declined as a consequence of the cancer and we lost her long before her time would've come. There is no doubt in my mind that my smoking directly contributed to her illness and her death, and I regret that and miss her to this day. I quit smoking shortly thereafter.

This is the stupidest article I've read in a very, very long time.

"Secondhand smoke is as dangerous for pets as it is for the non-smoking people who live with smokers."

That, actually, is true. Secondhand smoke has absolutely no health effect on anyone, human, canine, feline, or piscine.

How's the LA Times like CarolT's use of its message board as her own private PR Newswire? She spams message boards around the world with the same boilerplate.

Maybe she hopes the links will raise her google rankings?


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