Miami, US: The ability of a dog’s nose to identify COVID-19 could be the most recent COVID-19 detection technique for tourists.
According to airport officials in a news release issued Thursday, a pilot program using two COVID-19 detecting canines to screen American Airlines employees for the virus at a security checkpoint has been initiated since last two weeks.
Miami has teamed up with the Global Forensic and Justice Center at Florida International University and American Airlines to examine personnel in an airport first. If it proves to be a success, it may be moved to busy areas of the airport.
Two such alerts have already been made by Cobra, a Belgian Malinois, and One Betta, a Dutch Shepherd. According to Furton, one employee was unable to be tested, while the other received a negative PCR test but had recently recovered from the illness.
The canines had a detection rate of 96 to 99 percent and were rapid learners, which attributes to the previous training they underwent to detect laurel wilt, a fungus that kills particular trees.
The sources say that it can take two or three months to teach a fresh new puppy. However, the canines only took two or three days to learn and three weeks to become skilled.
According to a news release from the airport, the dogs can identify a scent from COVID-19 exhaled through a person’s breath and sweat after the virus causes metabolic abnormalities.
Cobra and One Betta were previously deployed to Florida Governor Ron DeSantis’ emergency operations center to look for virus-infected surfaces. These dogs were also tested at the South Beach Food and Wine festival to identify people who could be infected with COVID-19.
Source: USA Today