Uniquely trained dogs are competent at detecting humans who are infected with the virus that causes COVID-19, according to a new study.
The study, “Diagnostic Accuracy at Non-Invasive Detection of SARS-CoV-2 Infection by Canine Olfaction,” was published by the journal PLOS ONE and picked up by the Poynter Institute’s Tuesday edition of “Covering COVID-19: A Daily Coronavirus Briefing for Journalists.”
The study’s researchers put samples from 335 adults in front of dogs. Of those people, 143 showed coronavirus symptoms while 192 didn’t. Additionally, 109 of them tested positive for the coronavirus.
The dogs detected 97% of positive cases and found 100% of the cases that were positive and symptomatic, the study reported.
Researchers concluded that “the sensitivity of canine detection was higher than that of nasopharyngeal antigen testing.”
Additionally, researchers said, “non-invasive detection of SARS-CoV-2 infection by canine olfaction could be one alternative to NPSRT-PCR when it is necessary to obtain a result very quickly according to the same indications as antigenic tests in the context of mass screening.”
The French study pairs with similar studies indicating trained dogs’ ability to sniff COVID-19 in humans.