Weird News Coronavirus: dogs trained to detect the sick in Chile

13:15  15 july  2020
13:15  15 july  2020 Source:   leparisien.fr

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Police in Chile are training dogs to detect people that may be infected with the novel coronavirus by sniffing their sweat. The dogs -- three golden retrievers and a labrador -- are between the ages of four and five. Until now they have been used to sniff out illicit drugs, explosives and lost people, police say.

The dogs are already trained to detect odours of certain cancers, malaria and Parkinson's disease by the charity Medical Detection Dogs . Media captionFrench firefighters are trying to teach canines to sniff out coronavirus . Dogs have previously been trained to detect malaria from "foot odour

 Un chien entraîné à la détection olfactive du Covid-19, à Maisons-Alfort (photo d'illustration). © LP / Fanny Delporte

A dog trained in the olfactory detection of Covid-19, at Maisons-Alfort (photo of illustration).

The Chilean police have started to train dogs to locate Covid-19 patients by detecting the presence of the virus in their perspiration. The selected dogs, three golden retrievers and a labrador aged 4 to 5, have so far been used to search for drugs, explosives or missing persons, according to the police.

This program was born out of the collaboration of the Chilean national police, the Carabineros and specialists from the Catholic University of Chile. Similar initiatives have taken place recently in France and in Great Britain.

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A British charity has teamed up with scientists in the United Kingdom to train dogs to sniff out coronavirus infections in humans. The charity has already trained canines to use their keen sense of smell to detect the scent of malaria, cancer and or Parkinson’s disease. If the project works, the

The Medical Detection Dogs charity, which has previously trained dogs to detect malaria, believes canines may be Read:Second dog tests positive for coronavirus as owners warned not to abandon pets. James Logan, head of the Department of Disease Control at LSHTM, said: “Our previous work

READ ALSO: In Paris, soon sniffer dogs to detect the Covid-19?

Dogs have 330 million olfactory sensors and an ability to detect odors 50 times better than humans. "The virus does not smell, it is rather the infection which generates changes in the metabolism", which in turn translate into a particular variety of perspiration that "can spot the dog", explains Fernando Mardones , professor of veterinary epidemiology.

Unlikely to be infected

According to him, it has been proven that dogs can detect diseases such as tuberculosis, parasitic infections and even some early stages of cancer. They can also perceive small changes in skin temperature, which can help determine if a person is feverish. However, they are unlikely to be contaminated themselves according to the World Organization for Animal Health.

The dogs started their training a month ago and are working from sweat samples taken from patients hospitalized at the Catholic University clinic. Experts hope they will be operational by August. They may be deployed in places of passage such as stations, airports or dispensaries.

Chile reported on Tuesday 1836 new cases of covid-19, the lowest number in two months. In total, the country has recorded 319,493 cases of infection since March 3. More than 11,000 people have died from it, according to a report by the Ministry of Health, which also counts “probable” cases of coronavirus.

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