Laika the space dog, 1957

Laika the space dog, 1957

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Credit: SPUTNIK/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Laika the space dog. Laika in harness before being placed aboard the Soviet Sputnik 2 spacecraft. She was the first animal in space, launched on 3 November 1957. Laika (the name means 'Husky' or 'Barker') was placed in a sealed cabin with a food store and an air conditioner. Soviet propaganda at the time maintained that she survived for about a week, but in fact she died after just a few hours due to overheating and panic. The spacecraft was not designed to be recovered and it burnt up on re-entry on 14 April 1958, 162 days after its launch. This is a still from the film 'The First Soviet Earth Satellites'.

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