World Rat Day

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April 4 World Rat Day. A day to show kindness and appreciation to rats. Coined in 2002 by a group of pet enthusiasts with the aim of creating awareness about rats, and to pave the way for rats’ acceptance into human lives.

Rats have witnessed the era of dinosaurs and the extinction of the Jurassic era. They have seen the birth of human civilization and will probably see our extinction as well. The rat’s feature of not respecting boundaries has been used to describe some human characters. The common street slang β€œA rat” means a snitch.

Despite suffering immense harsh treatment and a bad reputation, rats have slowly worked their way to attaining recognition and a seat at the table. 

APOPO, a Belgian non-profit organization, conducted research on the Giant African Rat. The study established that by tapping into their strong sense of smell, rats can be used to detect landmines and diagnose Tuberculosis (TB).

Similar to standard tests like smear microscopy, bacterial culture tests and Genexpert, rats’ sensitivity is high and their sense of smell can be used to sniff for TB bacteria in people. 

Many lives have been lost in Africa and across the globe. Lab testing for TB can take between 2 and 14 days per sample to produce results depending on the technique. However, rats have the ability to sniff and complete up to 50 samples within 2 hours, making it ideal to be used in remote places.

Just like rats, businesses can learn the value of resilience and providing value. To celebrate, rats share some rat videos on our social networks.

Article by Hempstone Omondi

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