Lifestyle

Vets learn how to deal with former drug lab pets

Dogs are kept both as pet companions in drug lab locations and for security purposes.
Dogs are kept both as pet companions in drug lab locations and for security purposes.

WE SHOULDN'T need to be reminded how lucky we are to live in this part of the world.

Last week there were a couple of things that made me feel blessed to live here.

One was having visitors to stay from the big smoke who kept quizzing me to make sure that I wasn't taking our landscape and lifestyle for granted.

The other was when I was searching through online veterinary education options in the USA.

There I happened upon a course entitled "Care of Animals Seized From Clandestine Methamphetamine Laboratories".

Vets in many US states actually need to know this stuff!

It is so common in states like Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky and Missouri, that vets there need to be well- versed in dealing with the rescue of neglected and abandoned animals in an extremely hazardous environment.

These illicit and clandestine meth labs mostly aren't the shiny pristine facilities glamorised in the TV series Breaking Bad, but rather grotty, boot-of-a-car, kitchen or back shed jobs.

Cheap, nasty, full of extremely toxic and potentially unstable and explosive chemicals.

In the US in 2010 there were 9187 illicit meth lab seizure incidents, and the numbers are increasing.

By comparison, in the same year in Australia there were 700.

Animals are kept both as pet companions in these locations and for security purposes as guard dogs etc.

Children and animals unfortunate enough to be living in these environments are exposed to, and often have toxic blood levels of, chemicals such as heavy metals like mercury and solvents.

In the event of a "bust", the animals are usually abandoned and so in go the vets in their full HazMat gear with the rest of the clean-up and decontamination team.

So yes, I'm really grateful that I live somewhere where I don't need to know all about this stuff.

Cue Louis Armstrong singing, What a Wonderful World.

 

>> To read more lifestyle stories

Topics:  animals, crime, dogs, drug lab, lifestyle, pets


Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

Bouncer knocked out after night out

Bouncer knocked out after night out

Police prevent crime with community initiative

JAVA JIVES: Caboolture acting sergeant Clair Parsons has coffee with Joan Plaistow and her son Gary.

Caboolture police officers had coffee with the community on June 22.

Police appeal for witnesses in Narangba

Police car.
Photo: Alistair Brightman / Fraser Coast Chronicle

Police are investigating an argumat at Burpengary Rd and Mackie Rd.

Latest deals and offers

Armed robber steals cash at ATM

About 2.20am the man was approached by another man, who was carrying a knife and demanded the money that had just been withdrawn from the machine.

Bouncer knocked out after night out

Bouncer knocked out after night out

Police prevent crime with community initiative

JAVA JIVES: Caboolture acting sergeant Clair Parsons has coffee with Joan Plaistow and her son Gary.

Caboolture police officers had coffee with the community on June 22.

Police appeal for witnesses in Narangba

Police car.
Photo: Alistair Brightman / Fraser Coast Chronicle

Police are investigating an argumat at Burpengary Rd and Mackie Rd.

Seniors are getting fitter than youth

SENIOR ATHLETE: Triathlete Peter Brown is in his 60s but feels confident in running a marathon.

Those over 50-years-old could be fitter than younger generations.

Highway to hell as commuters face 8km traffic snarl

What does this S stand for, do you think?

So commuters, what does this 'S' stand for?

Caitlyn Shadbolt, Sara Storer join Gympie Muster bill

Caitlyn Shadbolt performs at CMC Rocks in March 2016.

AWARD-winning singers star in third line-up announcement.

Ernie Els dunks for eagle

Smooth swing, great shot.

Ernie Els lives up to his reputation for one of the best swings in golf.

Jay Leno in spectacular rollover

Car flips after wheelie stunt.

Jay Leno gets more than he expected when he rides along in a 2500 HP Barracuda.

John Oliver on Brexit

John Oliver tries to explain the Brexit result.

John Oliver explains the fallout from Brexit on Last Week Tonight.

Three bedroom, 1100sqm block: Is this Qld's cheapest home?

BARGAIN BUY: Is this North Bundaberg property the cheapest home in Queensland?

Becoming a real estate mogul is all about risk and reward

PROPERTY BOOM: Coast prices set to skyrocket

Like other areas in south-east Queensland, the Sunshine Coast is at the start of the upturn on the property clock.

Values predicted to rise 25-33%