We’ll never get tired of hearing about the heroics of dogs in our everyday lives, the unconditional love they give us and their intuitive and often life-saving skills. But it isn’t always a dramatic rescue in the rubble of an earthquake, or being pulled from a burning building. Sometimes, a dog can save your life just by nuzzling you!
That’s what’s happened to Susan Castriota, a children’s book author who writes stories about her adorable pooch, Bella. But she didn’t realise she was about to star in her own incredible, real-life story. Bella used to sleep at Susan’s feet in bed at night, but one particular summer, the animal started pawing, nudging and nuzzling into Susan’s breast. At first, she thought nothing of it as it was just usual, playful animal behaviour. Then in the fall, she had a mammogram and doctors discovered she had breast cancer.
Now there may be some nay-sayers out there who believe this was just coincidence, but as vet Karen Halligan explains, a dog’s sense of smell is over 100,000 times better than ours – due to their advance olfactory system. As such, if we’re unlucky enough to contract cancer, it gives off certain chemicals that a dog can pick up on. And not just cancer either, when we have low blood sugar levels or before a seizure. Our faithful four-legged friends can detect there’s something wrong and then do their best to try and warn us.
Dr Halligan also goes on to say it is possible to teach these animals to alert us when something is happening, but it looks like little Bella just did it on instinct, and could well have saved her mom’s life! While she doesn’t actually know Susan had breast cancer, she did know her normal smell – and when something smells out of the ordinary – that’s when Bella had to let her know things weren’t quite right.
Susan is getting the medical care she needs and is hoping to make a full recovery because her adorable pup is a better cancer detector than more doctors!
Don’t be too alarmed though if your pet suddenly comes sniffing around a certain area of your body! As the doctors say in the video – just be more aware of an abnormal or unusual amount of attention your pet might be giving you in a particular region. Watch the footage below for this remarkable story of yet another dog coming to the rescue. One more solid reason why they are our best friends.