How air pollution affects animals

Not only humans, domestic and wild animals are also suffering from bad air condition.

Pets

Pet species spend most of their time indoors, so if the indoor air is polluted, their health will be affected. Common diseases in pets include rhinitis, sore throat, asthma and bronchitis. To protect your pets, we should keep your home well ventilated, or if necessary, you can equip an air dryer to balance the atmosphere and clean the air.

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In addition, similar to humans, pets also react negatively to external air pollution. Many studies have found signs of toxic substances in dogs contaminated with air. In Mexico, for example, one of the most heavily polluted cities, the dogs' brains have inflammation, neurological disorders, and symptoms of Alzheimer's disease in humans. Among many reasons, pesticides are the main cause.

Best methods to protect pets from the negative impact of outdoor air pollution is limiting the use of pesticides in the home area, avoiding bringing pets to places with polluted air such as construction sites, crowded places. In addition, keeping the pets’ body clean will help them avoid other skin diseases.

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Insects

Insects are an animal that is vulnerable to the effects of air pollution. A small change in the air will also cause the insects to relocate, change the amount of food. In particular, bee is often a hot topic when discussing the effects of air pollution on wildlife. Air pollutants break fragile molecules from plants. This reduces the bee pollination significantly as they have to spend more time feeding.

Researchers on the subject say that because of the unbalance of the odor, the interaction between plants and insects is reduced. Honeybee and other pollination species are in trouble. By studying the correlation between bee populations and polluted air, experts can better understand what factors influence the decline in honey and what actions need to be taken to improve the situation.

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Amphibians and fishes

Acid rain falling on shallow waters causes the pH level to fluctuate. This makes many fish relocate. Not only that, fishes are also vulnerable to respiratory problems, even death series. Molluscs such as amphibians absorb the pollutants through the skin so they become much more sensitive if the pH level in the water is reduced. Meanwhile, some species of amphibians are more water-repellent than other species. PH imbalance changes the population as it increases competition and eating each other among amphibians.

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Birds

Birds are directly and indirectly affected by air pollution. They spend more time in the air and have higher breathing rates than humans. That's why birds are prone to getting sick when the air is polluted. Studies have shown that for birds with long-term exposure to pollution, there will be reduced egg production and hatching ability, lung failure, inflammation and decreased body size.

Bird habitats are also affected by polluted air. The ozone layer damages the plants that birds rely on for food, nesting and shelter. When acid rain affects fish populations, their food supply becomes scarce and the population gradually declines.

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Air pollution has a complex impact on all animals on the planet. Not only are we looking for ways to improve our living environment, we need to pay more attention to the animals around us. A complete ecosystem is indispensable for animals and plants. Consequently, protecting animals against the effects of pollution is also protecting our own lives.

By: Roxana Edwards

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