British charity workers and scientists have come together to see whether the dogs can detect the new coronavirus through their keen sense of smell. Medical Detection Dogs will work with the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM) and Durham University are working on detecting whether the canines can diagnose patients with Covid-19. They are presently working in Northeast England.
It follows the research into the dog's ability to sniff out various other diseases like malaria, cancer. Canines are able to sniff out of the distinct odour of each of the diseases. The organisations have started their preparations for training the dogs "to help provide a rapid, non-invasive diagnosis towards the tail end of the epidemic". The charity had also trained the dogs also known as medical detection dogs, to detect cancer, Parkinson's and bacterial infections by sniffing out samples.
Pets are being thrown out into the streets
As the organisation gears up to find an innovative solution to detect the virus, there are rumours going around about how animals can transmit the coronavirus to the owners. So far there have been three evident cases that have showed that the canines and the feline pets can be diagnosed with the new coronavirus.
There was a case of a cat that suggested that the animal was infected after being in close contact with its owner who had Covid-19. Another case came from Hong Kong where the dog was tested positive twice with the disease. There have been cases of false positives as well.
Dogs can detect a slight change in temperature. In principle, the founder of the Medical Detection Dogs is sure that the dogs can detect the disease but there is so much more to accomplish. The charity is presently trying to catch the odor safely from the patient.
Dogs can detect malaria with high accuracy. Yet, in several parts of the world the canines as well cats are being thrown out into the streets after reports emerged that the pets can be infected by the novel coronavirus. People have taken to Twitter to talk about the issue as well.
People are spreading the message of positivity about the pets not getting the new coronavirus. They have said that the chances are very less. Until now there has been no evidence that the animals can be carriers. If so, this could have jeopardise the charity's work to save as many lives as possible through Medical Dog Detection.