Yet another way dogs can help humans out.
Two companies in Uppsala have started training dogs to sniff out Covid-19, and they will be the first of their kind in Sweden. Hopefully, these highly trained canines will be used at large events, to screen attendees. Therefore, it is important, that these dogs are thorough so that everybody can attend large events without fear of catching Covid-19. [Photo: The Independent]
The dogs are being trained by specialist dog trainers, and the study is being conducted by Uppsala University, the Uppsala region and SLU. Their training is expected to take up to 3 months. However, the troop of 8 dogs could be ready to start working in a month’s time.
This all sounds very ambitious but there are examples of Covid-19 dogs in other countries who have achieved impressive accuracy when sniffing out the virus. In Germany, for example, dogs have reached 94% accuracy when detecting the virus in saliva samples. Both symptomatic and non-symptomatic carriers of Covid-19 were detected because Covid-19 has a special scent, which trained dogs are able to detect.
Finland’s Helsinki airport and Chile’s Santiago airport have also been using Covid-19 dogs to detect the virus in passengers since September 2020, and now it seems that the idea is spreading. If you’d like to help the team training these dogs and you live in Uppsala, you can leave a scent sample at the testing centre after you have been tested for Covid-19.