Sniffer dogs for detecting COVID-19

News about sniffer dogs being trained all over the globe to detect COVID-19 has circulated in social media lately. These sniffer dogs could help control and even end the COVID-19 pandemic, according to those news reports.

Sniffer dog COVID-19
Photo by Amal Santhosh from Pexels

Sniffer dogs for detecting COVID-19

The news reports also furthered that dog trainers have claimed promising results, some even claiming that these sniffer dogs could detect the virus accurately. As such, these dogs can help identify those infected with COVID-19 even in a large crowd such as in airports.

Dogs have a superior sense of smell and people have harnessed this characteristic for many years.

How did trainers do this for COVID-19 cases?

Dogs were made to sniff samples taken from both infected and uninfected test patients. The dogs were able to identify 83% positive cases and 96% of negative ones.

On the other hand, a report by Reuters said that dogs in Thailand are being trained to smell infection from the sweat of humans. The trainers found that the dogs were able to detect infections with a 95% accuracy. These dogs identified the infections within seconds in areas that are busy and that have large foot traffic.

According to the report, the dogs can detect a volatile organic compound secreted in the sweat of COVID-19 sufferers, even in the absence of disease symptoms, said the Thai researcher.

The dogs would not need to directly sniff people, but could screen samples of sweat, a task that should not be difficult in a tropical country such as Thailand, stated the research.

Aside from Thailand, other countries that are considering this strategy of using sniffer dogs are Chile, Finland, and India.

The COVID-19 pandemic has been raging since early 2020. While there are countries that are successful in containing the virus, there are still many nations that find it difficult to control the virus even with lockdowns in place.

Moreover, some countries still find it challenging to conduct mass testing, as such, this development of using sniffer dogs could be a faster and more economical alternative.

What do you think of this development?


  1. I've heard that dogs can smell virus, cancer etc. Dogs are no doubts the best !! 😘😘

    1. That's correct! That's how awesome dogs are. Always the best!


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