Coronavirus: could dogs detect COVID-19?

Could dogs, with their extraordinary sense of smell, be able to detect the coronavirus? Signs point to yes.

Coronavirus: could dogs detect COVID-19?
© Getty Images
Coronavirus: could dogs detect COVID-19?

It's well known that when trained, dogs are capable of detecting some human illnesses, such as certain types of cancers, Parkinson's disease, or even malaria. Would it be possible to train them to detect the coronavirus as well? Signs point to yes.

Discover our latest podcast

Dogs are already on the job

A team of British scientists from the University of Durham and the London School of Tropical Medicine (LSHTM) is carried out tests, according to the BBC. Dr Claire Guest said that dogs will be able to help detect the virus and they are already being employed in Russia to sniff out the second wave.

It's important to remember that all viruses and diseaseshave a scent. Therefore, with their extremely developed sense of smell, dogs could very well be trained to help doctors detect patients, even those with no symptoms.

Getty Images

How to deploy the disease sniffers

However, it should be remembered that dogsare not allowed in hospitals. Once the dogs are operational, a rigorous system will have to be put in place to permit these animals to screen humans in public places. They could then detect infected people in train stations, airports, and certain other public places with the aim of preventing another outbreak of the disease once the current situation is under control.

For those who are concerned about their pets, remember that even when in contact with people infected with the virus, dogs cannot transmit it to humans and therefore are not carriers.

Finally, some much-needed reassuring news!

COVID-19: Alpha variant can cause serious heart problems in pets COVID-19: Alpha variant can cause serious heart problems in pets