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Director: Filomena Marta
Periodicidade: Semanal

Editorial 6



Recently we have seen another example of the lightness with which the life of an animal is treated. After all, an example of the way the animals are seen, as a general rule, only as "just a dog", "just a cat", "just an animal".


But it seems that this does not happen always or in all countries. After the world tried to save the dog of Madrid, Excalibur, of the Spanish nursing assistant who became the first person in Europe to be infected with the Ebola virus, behold, in the United States there is a similar case, but with the guarantee that the animal will not be sacrificed.

Excalibur didn't survive the ignorance and indifference of the Spanish authorities, despite an international petition that have collected more than 300 thousand signatures in just one day and the strong demonstrations in defense of the animal's life outside the apartment where Excalibur was and from where was brutally taken out to be immediately euthanized, without even ever being screened for the virus.

This drama had a global reach and has been "trending topic" on twitter social network. It was at the top of the comments, and maybe that saved the American dog's life right now. Either that, or Americans are proving to be infinitely more intelligent, cultured and civilized than "nuestros hermanos".  What is certain is that a Dallas health technician also contracted the Ebola virus, she also has a dog, but the Mayor of the city has reported that "unlike a recent Spanish case" the dog of this employee will not be euthanized and will be kept safe to be reunited in the future with his owner.  Mike Rawlings, responsible for Dallas, told USA TODAY that "the dog is very important for the patient and we want him to be safe".

We see two countries, two measures, two realities and two sensibilities.  And they are so distinct. Will it be for civilization, for sense and sensibility,  or because America saw how the world reacted to the death of Excalibur?

The "specialized" opinions go on, and at the same time it is said that dogs can be asymptomatic carriers of Ebola there is no record of a dog infected with the virus. The only study on the subject, dating back to 2005,was made by a team from the same specialist who defended that Madrid's dog should not be killed. Eric Leroy, director of the International Center of Medical research in Franceville, Gabon, studied more than 300 dogs in that territory. The result says that antibodies were detected, but not any genetic material of the virus or antigens. That is, the virus was not detected, although an immune response against it was identified.

If dogs can be transmitters or if they have the ability to fight and eliminate the virus without transmitting it, remains unknown. It is estimated that the dog is infected by other animals and by people; it is known that dogs have no symptoms and that therefore they appear to eliminate the virus entirely. If there are no viruses, they cannot be transmitted. It seems obvious.

And here, in this country where a law against the mistreatment of animals have just been passed, but where the animals are still things, what would it be like?


Filomena Marta


Photo: Author unknown, Internet, words of David Michie, author of the page "The Dalai Lama's Cat"




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