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november 3 - Laika's Day

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robert99 robert99 Sweden Posts: 1360
1 4 Nov 2015

A stray dog called Laika became the first living creature launched into orbit – and tragically died – on this day in 1957.

Launched at the height of the Russian-American Space Race, Sputnik 2 was a rushed Soviet space mission which came less than a month after the successful launch of Sputnik 1, the first artificial Earth satellite.

Soviet leader Nikita Krushchev wanted his engineers to follow Sputnik 1 with a "space spectacular" – and it was decided that this would be the launch of the first living animal into orbit.

That living animal turned out to be Laika – a three-year-old stray mongrel who was found wandering the streets of Moscow. Soviet scientists believed such dogs would be used to extreme conditions, having suffered severe cold and hunger while living as a stray.

reddapanda reddapanda ACT Posts: 381
2 5 Nov 2015
Oh this is quite sad/touching.

“The more time passes, the more I'm sorry about it. We shouldn't have done it ... We did not learn enough from this mission to justify the death of the dog.”

Thanks for sharing it Robert, appreciated.


robert99 robert99 Sweden Posts: 1360
3 6 Nov 2015
For those who've read "The Right Stuff" you'll know about Ham the Chimp. If not see

robert99 robert99 Sweden Posts: 1360
4 4 Nov 2017