Note to Editors: A fact sheet about secondhand smoke and pets is attached below the following media advisory.
WHAT: The fifth annual Stomp, Romp and Wag, an event for Colorado State University students and staff to raise awareness about the effects of secondhand smoke on pets.
WHERE: 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Wednesday, April 25, on the north lawn of Hartshorn Health Services, Colorado State University.
DETAILS: This event, which is open to students and staff, includes a look-alike contest for pets and their owners; a demonstration by Sheba the Wonder Dog, a dog reported to be able to answer numerical questions; and Doggie Idol, a dog talent show judged by a panel of Colorado State pre-veterinary students. Canine massages, nail trims, basic health checks, dog licensing (w/proof of rabies shots), barbecue, Frosty Paws treats for dogs, and information on secondhand smoke and tobacco cessation will be available during the entire event.
A schedule of events follows:
10:30 – 11:00 Event begins
11:00 – 11:30 Flyball demonstration
11:45 – 12:00 Tidbit toss contest
12:00 – 12:15 Guest speaker from the Veterinary Teaching Hospital Oncology department
12:30 – 1:00 Sled dog demonstration
1:00 – 1:45 Sheba the Wonder Dog demonstration and Doggie Idol contest
1:45 Pet -owner look a like contest winner announced
2:00 – 2:30 Disc dogs demonstration
Fact Sheet: Stomp, Romp and Wag
People 18 to 24 years of age – the average age range for college students – are the focus of the tobacco industry. In fact, every age group except those that range from 18 to 24 years old shows a substantial reduction in smoking prevalence. College is a crucial time to either prevent usage or begin tobacco cessation efforts.
Stomp, Romp and Wag is an event that focuses on creating awareness of the effects of secondhand smoke on pets. Many students have pets and are unaware that their habits may be harmful – and even deadly – to their animal. Knowing the dangers associated with a pet’s exposure to secondhand smoke often leads to changes in smoking habits, such as smoking outside instead of in the house, or not smoking while driving or in a car with a pet. Even these small changes may lead to overall change in smoking habits and may lead to quitting altogether.
Secondhand Smoke and Pets (source: American Lung Association; www.nhlung.org)
– Dogs that inhale secondhand smoke are three times more likely to develop lung or nasal cancer than dogs living in a smoke-free environment.
– Dogs can experience allergic reactions to secondhand smoke. Common symptoms are scratching, biting and chewing of their skin – which owners often confuse with fleas or food allergies.
– Cigarette butt consumption can be deadly; just two cigarettes, if eaten by a puppy, can cause death in a relatively short period of time.
– Birds can experience adverse reactions to secondhand smoke and may develop eye problems, as well as other respiratory problems such as coughing and wheezing.
– Birds that sit on a smoker’s hand can experience contact dermatitis from the nicotine that remains on the smoker’s hand which can cause them to pull out their feathers.
– Cats exposed to secondhand smoke in the home have a higher rate of oral cancer. This may be due to the poisons from the smoke that have settled on the fur, which they ingest during grooming.
– Cats exposed to secondhand smoke have a higher rate of feline lymphoma, a deadly form of cat cancer, than cats not exposed to secondhand smoke.
– Cats can develop respiratory problems, lung inflammation, and asthma as a result of secondhand smoke.
College Students and Tobacco
– There has been a major surge in tobacco industry money to market to the college population following the Tobacco Settlement Agreement in 1998. (Bacchus and Gamma)
– Tobacco companies spend $ 6.9 – 8.4 billion just to market to the college population alone. (Journal of American College Health, March 2001)
– 28.5 percent of college students are currently smokers nationally. ("Tobacco Use Among College and University Students" Tobacco Summit, April 2001)
– 19 percent of Fort Collins residents are current smokers. (1998 Health Survey, Poudre Health Services District)
– 31 percent of CU Boulder students are tobacco users. (TUAS Data Survey)
– 36 percent of CSU students are current tobacco users. (TUAS Date Survey)
– During 1993 to 2000, substantial reductions in current smoking prevalence were reported for all age groups, except those 18-24 years of age. (Center for Disease Control and Prevention, MMWR 2002)