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VOA慢速英语(翻译+字幕+讲解):受训的血糖检测犬可挽救生命

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Dogs Trained to Smell Low Blood Sugar Levels May Save Lives

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Dogs can be trained to use their sense of smell to recognize illegal drugs and explosives. So Mark Ruefenacht wondered if the animals also could recognize changes in the blood sugar level of people with diabetes.

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Ruenfenacht has had the disease for much of his life. In 1999, he almost died while training a young dog to be a guide dog for the blind. Without any warning, his blood sugar suddenly dropped to a dangerously low level.

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Ruefenacht said the dog stayed with him, and tried to keep him awake.

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"More than likely, I had a seizure, from the low blood sugar. The dog liked me, and he stuck with me and I was able to get my blood sugar up."

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When talking about a drop in blood sugar, doctors use the term hypoglycemia. Ruefenacht said his near death experience made him wonder if dogs could be trained to identify the chemical changes that happen during an attack, and then inform their owners.

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Dogs4Diabetics begins

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Ruefenacht worked with scientists and financed research which found that the "smell" of hypoglycemia appears in both breath and sweat. He also worked with and studied animal trainers who teach dogs to recognize everything from explosives to cancer.

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In addition, Ruefenacht started training a yellow Labrador retriever named Armstrong to tell him when he had a dangerously low blood sugar level.

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The training was successful. Armstrong is now listed in The Guinness Book of World Records as the world's first diabetes-detection dog.

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Armstrong died in 2012.

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Ruefenacht noted that after his early training successes, several organizations offered him a lot of money for the rights to his discoveries. He told VOA he refused those offers. Instead, in 2004, he created a group called Dogs4Diabetics, where he trains dogs to help people with diabetes.

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Ruefenacht says training for a diabetes detection dog and its owner can cost up to $50,000. His organization raises money to cover the costs, so they can provide dogs for free to those in need.

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The smell of hypoglycemia

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To train the animals, Ruefenacht uses bottles containing swabs of sweat from a diabetic with low blood sugar, and containers of other smells, such as peanut butter, dog food, or plants. The dogs are given a treat when they choose the correct jar.

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This "sweat jar" method for training diabetes detection dogs has been approved scientifically.

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The next step is to teach the dog to alert the owner. The dogs are trained to use subtle signs at first. However, if those signals are ignored, the animals then put their paws on the owner's legs or shoulders. They learn to lick and put their nose in the owner's face, and make noises. If none of these methods work, the dogs are then trained to find someone else to help.

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Ruefenacht says the dogs can often detect blood sugar dropping long before electronic systems send a warning sound.

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Dogs4Diabetics has placed more than 100 dogs with diabetics. The group hopes to expand the program -- training people's "most loyal friend" to save lives and help diabetics around the world.

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I'm Phil Dierking.

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重点单词   查看全部解释    
subtle ['sʌtl]

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adj. 微妙的,敏感的,精细的,狡诈的,不明显的

 
addition [ə'diʃən]

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n. 增加,附加物,加法

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单词addition 联想记忆:
add增加,ition名词后缀
 
diabetes [.daiə'bi:ti:z]

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n. 糖尿病

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单词diabetes 联想记忆:
dia=2,bet赌博:2个人整天赌博,导致身体发胖,得了糖尿病。
 
benefit ['benifit]

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n. 利益,津贴,保险金,义卖,义演
vt.

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单词benefit 联想记忆:
bene好,fit做-做事后的好处
 
expand [iks'pænd]

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v. 增加,详述,扩展,使 ... 膨胀,
v

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单词expand 联想记忆:
ex出,pand展开-展开出去-扩大
 
sweat [swet]

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n. 汗,汗水
v. (使)出汗

 
illegal [i'li:gəl]

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adj. 不合法的,非法的
n. 非法移民

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单词illegal 联想记忆:
il不+legal合法的→不合法的
 
alert [ə'lə:t]

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adj. 警觉的,灵敏的
n. 警戒,警报

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单词alert 联想记忆:
al直+ert站直了看→警惕的→警惕的
 
professional [prə'feʃənl]

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adj. 职业的,专业的,专门的
n. 专业人

 
jar [dʒɑ:]

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n. 不和谐,刺耳声,震动,震惊,广口瓶
vi

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单词jar 联想记忆:
读:炸-震动
 
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