My World

The world according to me!

Ok Laika

There’s no question about it I’m a dog person. I’ve always been that way. The all encompassing love faithful dogs have for their owners gets to me. I love their noses, their temperament, their everything.

I have my preferences but really any dog will do. My younger brother even jokes that I could find cuteness in the mangiest pothound. That my favourite refrain is, “All they need is a little love.”

It’s true, I have a weakness for dogs. Hence the title of this post.

Let me explain. I interviewed The Mighty Sparrow last week, and he sang several songs to me, one of them was “Russian Satellite”.  It struck a chord, because I didn’t know this Sparrow song, but I’d read about Sputnik 2 as a child. I didn’t like the story then and I hate it now.

The story of Laika is a sad one. She was a Russian stray dog picked to test whether living beings could survive in space. Female dogs were selected because they could pee lying down, and the actual space the dog would occupy was small.

As a child I was upset by the fact that this dog was sent to her certain death. It seems the scientists themselves were also concerned by that, because one took the dog home with him the night before her flight to play with his children. They also lied about the circumstances surrounding Laika’s death. At the time they said she survived for 4 to 7 days in space. She really only lived 7 hours maximum after takeoff, due to overheating and stress.  This they only confirmed 45 years after the fact.

One of the doctors involved in the project had this to say:

“The more time passes, the more I’m sorry about it…We did not learn enough from this mission to justify the death of the dog.”

Excuse me while I go cry…

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1 Comment»

  kittyarmy wrote @

I came across your blog while researching some info on Laika. Nice to know I wasn’t the only one who cried. In my case I wasn’t yet born, but the culprit was a graphic novel “Laika” by Nick Abdazis which I had borrowed from the library last Saturday. Off all the books I checked out that was the first one I read, and it quickly had me bawling where I sat. I’m a dog lover too (although I count myself as a cat lover as well) so as such I found Laika’s story absolutely heartbreaking.


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