Laika was a Soviet dog who became the first-ever living being sent to space and the first animal to orbit the earth. Previously, a stray dog from the streets of Moscow, Laika was selected to travel to outer space to test the working of the Sputnik 2 spacecraft.
As exciting as the story seems, it ended on a rather distressing note.
There were no systems planned or created for Lakia’s survival or recovery. There were neither proper training nor safety measures laid out while Sputnik 2 was launched on November 3, 1957. She was merely used as an experiment for enlightening human beings about the potential risk of traveling in space. However, the associated scientists knew how bleak Laika’s chances of survival were as little was known about space travel and the concerned technology at that time.
Needless to say, Laika died during the voyage. Her cause of death was reported to be asphyxia. The Soviet Government also claimed that she had been euthanized during her voyage. However, her real cause of death wasn’t unveiled until October 2002. The animal died within hours due to overheating of the spacecraft.
In 2008, Russia built a monument honoring Laika and her contribution to Science. Nevertheless, humankind will forever owe a huge apology to Laika.