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    Canadian police forces are undergoing a transformation dealing with changing service demands at a time when the national crime rate has dropped to its lowest level since 1969.

    But the head of the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police (CACP) says while the stats seem to indicate a kinder, gentler society, they fail to tell the full picture of what’s happening on the streets.

    “The reality is that crime is coming down but the demand for our service has not decreased,” Clive Weighill, who is also Saskatoon’s police chief, told Yahoo Canada News.

    “We are seeing this right across Canada as about 25 per cent of our resources are dealing with crime issues. The rest is dealing with social issues.”

    Weighill, a 31-year veteran officer, explained those issues could be calls, such as checking out a suspicious person or vehicle and neighbourhood or custody disputes.

    “These are the things that are time consuming and tying us up.”

    Police forces are also under increasing pressure, but are

    Read More »from CACP head cautions against reading too much into declining crime rate
  • Sled dogs rest on the frozen Frobisher Bay in Iqaluit in this file photo. (Reuters)Sled dogs rest on the frozen Frobisher Bay in Iqaluit in this file photo. (Reuters)

    For the fourth year in a row, Manitoba is the worst place in Canada for animal abusers to be.

    Last month, the Animal Legal Defence Fund – founded in 1979 by a group of attorneys eager to foster the legal protection of animals – rated all 13 Canadian provinces and territories on the strength of their animal protection laws.

    Manitoba – again – came out on top.

    “Manitoba is doing a variety of really good things,” Aileen White, director of communications for the Winnipeg Humane Society, tells Yahoo Canada.

    “They’ve reviewed the Animal Care Act a few years ago, and made changes which are fantastic. Every step that helps catch and prosecute animal abusers is a very, very good thing. And obviously the Humane Society applauds that.”

    She points to harsher sentencing in the courts as one of the reasons why. In 2010, a Manitoba couple were charged with animal hoarding in a horrendous case involving 61 neglected and abused dogs on one property. The judge imposed jail time, a fine and a ban on

    Read More »from Manitoba ranks highest again in prosecuting animal cruelty; Nunavut ranks lowest
  • Estela Meléndez was shocked to learn what she had been carrying for decades. (Photo: YouTube)Estela Meléndez was shocked to learn what she had been carrying for decades. (Photo: YouTube)

    A Chilean woman recently received some startling news when she found out she had been carrying a fetus in her uterus for more than 60 years.

    According to CNN, 91-year-old Estela Meléndez of La Boca, Chile, was seeing her doctor after she fell. She told her doctors that she had a lump on her belly for several years, but never thought anything of it.  

    Her doctors conducted a number of X-rays and quickly discovered the calcified fetus, which is a dead fetus that has become calcified in the uterus,  also known as lithopedion.

    The doctors confirmed that Meléndez had been carrying the uterus for more than six decades, which actually posses as no serious threat for Meléndez.

    This past January, Meléndez’s husband Manuel González passed away at 91. The couple had been married for 74 years. Meléndez told CNN that one of her few regrets in life was that she and her husband were not able to conceive a child.

    Finding out that you lost a child is extremely difficult in any circumstance, but

    Read More »from Chilean woman learns she's been carrying a mummified fetus for more than 60 years
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    When you’re sick – or when your kid is sick – you want relief immediately. For many people, that means going to the doctor to get a prescription for antibiotics.

    It may surprise you to find out that doing so is often the wrong move. In the U.S., a recent study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) found that 25 per cent of the general population is under the mistaken belief that antibiotics can treat a cold.

    What are antibiotics used for?

    Antibiotics kill bacteria and stop bacterial infections. They will help if you have strep throat, bladder and skin infections, and some ear infections, which are all caused by bacteria. Antibiotics will not cure viral infections such as the common cold or flu.

    Sometimes a lab test is needed to identify whether you have a bacterial or viral infection, says Maryse Durette of Health Canada.

    “We try to avoid antibiotics when we can,” says Hoda Mankal, a nurse practitioner at the Carlington Community Health Center in Ottawa and the

    Read More »from When to take antibiotics... and when you should just stay home
  • Alberta mom left with $30,000 air ambulance bill after premature birth

    "At that point it was life or death for my baby, so we said we’ll figure it out later."

    An Alberta woman had no choice but to take an air ambulance after suddenly going into labour 32 weeks early.

    But now she’s left with a hefty medical bill, struggling to pay it off.

    Amy Savill, a mother of two from High Prairie, was visiting her family in Northern Ontario when she unexpectedly went into labour, reported CTV News. 

    She was quickly rushed to a nearby hospital.

    But according to the Toronto Star, the hospital in Timmins wasn’t equipped to handle births prior to 32 weeks gestation.

    An air ambulance was called in to transport Savill to a hospital in Sudbury, about four hours away.

    The price for the air lift ended up being $30,000.

    “At that point it was life or death for my baby, so we said we’ll figure it out later,” Savill told CTV News.

    When she arrived in Sudbury, Savill underwent an emergency caesarean section and gave birth to a baby girl, Amelia.

    Now Savill is left to cover the air lift in spite of Canada’s universal health care. 

    “Ontario won’t cover because we’re not

    Read More »from Alberta mom left with $30,000 air ambulance bill after premature birth
  • Humanity, as a whole, continues to struggle with the ominous, impending idea that the global climate is changing.

    Many still deny it. Many others are searching for ways to cope.

    How delightful, then, to discover that pests, parasites and pathogens are way out ahead of us – with species already physically evolving to meet the survival challenges of a burgeoning new biosphere.

    “Some of the best evidence for climate change involves organisms shifting around the planet, moving north as things warm up in the atmosphere,” Dan Bebber, a senior lecturer in microbial biology at Exeter University in England, told Yahoo Canada.

    “They’re able to adapt very quickly to new conditions – whether that’s overcoming the pesticides and things that we use to try to combat them, or adapting to new climates. They can adapt to those quite quickly, and therefore we’re facing greater threats to our agriculture.”

    Bebber has recently compiled an intriguing summary of relevant research being conducted around the

    Read More »from Pests and parasites are already adapting to climate change
  • Husband surprises wife with her own pregnancy

    "I can’t believe I’m finding out like this."

    It’s not often a husband gets to break the news to his wife that they’re expecting. 

    So after getting a hunch that his wife may be pregnant with their third child, Sam Rader decided to reverse the roles. 

    He surprised his wife, Nia, with news of her pregnancy before she even knew and shared the adorable moment on YouTube. It has since received over four million views. 

    The YouTube couple are high school sweethearts from Wills Point, Texas, and are raising their two children while vlogging daily about their lives.

    Rader knew his wife might be pregnant after she sent him a text message saying she was two weeks late. So when he came home from work, he decided to investigate and managed to steal a urine sample from her.

    “So I had this dream about announcing Nia’s pregnancy to her,” Rader says into the camera. “I wanted to find out before she does.”

    Standing in the bathroom, he explains that his wife pees throughout the night and doesn’t flush the toilet, afraid she’ll wake up the baby.

    Read More »from Husband surprises wife with her own pregnancy
  • Monkey the cat deposits a plastic ball into the machine and voila. Dinner is served! (Photo: YouTube)Monkey the cat deposits a plastic ball into the machine and voila. Dinner is served! (Photo: YouTube)

    And here you probably were, pouring your cat’s food into the bowl like a sucker! 

    Addressing what we can only assume was the sheer boredom with the mundane task of feeding his pet, Ben Millam designed a feeding machine that will only release food once a special plastic ball has been deposited by his cat.

    Millam, who refers to himself as an “aspiring geek,” took the time to train his cat, Monkey, to hunt for plastic balls that he hides around the house and drop them into the machine. When the machine processes the RFID-tagged ball, the attached feeder will release food for the cat to eat. 

    Millam developed this technique after he read an explanation of why cats go about repeatedly exploring the same areas. 

    “It’s partly to establish and survey their territory, but they’re also practicing ‘mobile’ hunting,” Millam said. “So what if my cat, while out on patrol, actually found its prey? Surely this would bring him one step closer towards a more fulfilled and self-actualized indoor kitty

    Read More »from Creative pet owner's unique feeding machine requires cat to hunt for its food
  • The Rotary Club of Burlington-Lakeshore, the charitable organization behind "Canada’s Largest Ribfest", is not exactly in the most giving mood these days. The club is caught up in a heated battle with brand new privately-run competitor the Northern Heat Rib Series.

    Why you ask? Well, the owner of the latter privately held Ribfest, Justin Brown, has decided to bring his event to the city of Hamilton in June, almost thrtee months of The Burlington Rotary’s 20th annual festival set to open this Labour Day Weekend. According to the Rotary, the timing is too close.

    While one might think a charitable organization as well-known and respected as your local Rotary club would be inclined to simply send a friendly reminder to a fellow citizen about its event and maybe even find a way to co-exist, the Burlington-Lakeshore chapter has decided to get down and dirty in this turf war over deliciously barbecued meat and take things to another level.

    After letters sent from multiple Rotary clubs to

    Read More »from Ribbers beefing over territory and money
  • It’s safe to say that every new mother dreams of the moment her baby say ‘mama’ for the very first time.

    One mom from Utah wanted to hear her baby say the magic word so much, she tried to bribe him into it by holding up food. 

    To the shock of both mom and baby, the family’s Australian Shepherd managed to say it first instead.

    The thirty-second video was uploaded to YouTube and concludes with Samuel reaching out his hand to stop Patch the dog from talking, as if annoyed he had the chance to speak first. 

    It has been noted that Australian Shepherds are one of the most intelligent dog breeds, known for their obedience and agility. But who knew they could talk, too?

    Read More »from Dog beats baby to his first word

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