Sniffing dogs to detect COVID-19 at Dubai airport


Coronavirus-sniffing dogs

Coronavirus-sniffing dogs. Credit: Shutterstock
Coronavirus-sniffing dogs. Credit: Shutterstock

Coronavirus-sniffing dogs capable of detecting the infection with 92 percent accuracy have been recruited to vet travellers arriving in the United Arab Emirates at Dubai airport.

All travellers must be tested for COVID-19 prior to their trip before showing the confirmed negative result on arrival.

According to DailyMail UK, Dubai International Airport has now also introduced the use of police sniffer dogs who are capable of detecting coronavirus among passengers within minutes.

It comes as the UAE reported a total of 61,163 coronavirus cases and 351 deaths

Dubai’s Ministry of Interior in a statement stated that, “Data and studies showed that detection of presumed Covid-19 cases achieved approximately 92 per cent in overall accuracy.

“Figures indicate that dogs can quickly detect infected cases, help protect key sites, effectively deal with huge crowds and secure large events, airports, etc.”

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The process begins with a sample of body odor being taken from a passenger’s armpit before it is placed inside a container in an isolated room.

The specially-trained dogs then sniff the samples through a funnel-like contraption and, if they detect coronavirus, the passenger is then directed to take the nasal PCR test.

The dogs never come in direct contact with the passengers.

Sniffer dogs have previously been used to detect several other diseases that can affect body odor such as cancer and malaria.

Last month researchers from Germany trained army sniffer dogs to distinguish between samples of fluids from patients infected with SARS-CoV-2 and healthy donors.

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