Is there anything dogs can't do?
I mean really, they keep on earning their title of Man's Best Friend. From being an excellent companion, an in-home vacuum system for fallen foods, to functioning as feet warmers, dogs improve our lives in so many ways.
And now, the latest news from researchers in Thailand have us even more grateful for our furry best friends -- turns out, they can sniff out COVID-19.
Imagine a COVID-19 test so non-invasive, a swab anywhere near your body isn't required.
That's the claim from a team of scientists who say dogs can detect a particular odor given off by humans infected with COVID-19.
WGRZ reports that scientists in Great Britain are also studying COVID detection dogs, and that such trained dogs have already been in use in the United States at various sporting events.
The numbers from the Thailand study seem very promising.
The Associated Press reports researchers trained six golden retrievers to pick up on a particular scent emitted in the sweat of people with COVID-19.
The researchers from the Faculty of Veterinary Science at Bangkok’s Chulalongkorn University ran a study of 1,000 people, and the dogs' detection success rate was 95 percent.
Researchers hope the use of dogs to detect COVID-19 will allow places that are hotspots to be identified in locales where traditional laboratory testing might not be feasible, or available.
According to the Associated Press, the dogs do have their limitations. The head of the Thai research team, Prof. Kaywalee Chatdarong says that while the work the dogs do is amazing, they are still animals.
"5 p.m. is their dinner time. When it’s around 4:50, they will start to be distracted. So, you can’t really have them work anymore. And we can’t have them working after dinner either because they need a nap. They are living animals and we do have to take their needs and emotions into consideration,” Chatdarong said.
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