We’ve all seen dogs used at checkpoints along the border or at airports to help sniff out drugs and other illegal activities, but could sniffer dogs also be used to sniff out diseases? Like the coronavirus or instance? Apparently, they can, or so Finnish researchers believe.
Researchers from the country have high hopes of the effectiveness of these dogs at detecting the coronavirus. They are so confident that they have deployed four of them at the Helsinki airport and based on preliminary tests, the dogs were able to sniff out the virus in humans with “nearly 100%” accuracy, even if the person has not developed any symptoms just yet.
When a dog smells that a person has the virus, it will either start to yelp, paw at the ground, or lie down, then the person is given a PCR test to help verify the dog’s suspicions. Right now it is unclear what it is that dogs can smell that might give them an indication that a person has the coronavirus, but it seems to work.
It could be in the sweat, where the odor might differ from a person who does not have the virus. The idea of using dogs isn’t a new one. Back in July, dogs in Spain were being similarly trained in this way.