Scientists trains sniffer dogs that can detect coronavirus with 94% accuracy

Further progress are ongoing in the fight against COVID-19 across the world.

A German veterinary clinic has reportedly trained sniffer dogs to detect coronavirus in human saliva samples with over 94% accuracy.


The conditioning of the dog will enable them pick up the “corona odour” that comes from cells in infected people, said Esther Schalke, a vet at Germany’s armed forces school for service dogs.


Filou, a three-year-old Belgian Shepherd, and Joe Cocker, a one-year-old Cocker Spaniel, are two of the dogs currently being trained at Hanover’s University of Veterinary Medicine.

“We did a study where we had dogs sniffing samples from COVID-positive patients and we can say that they have a 94% probability in our study… that they can sniff them out,” said Holger Volk, head of the veterinary clinic.

“So dogs can really sniff out people with infections and without infections, as well as asymptomatic and symptomatic COVID patients,” he added.

“We now need tests in selected events,” Mr. Weil said.

In September 2020, dogs trained to detect the novel coronavirus began sniffing passenger samples at Helsinki-Vantaa airport in Finland.