How dogs can sniff diseases

 Pets are known to be comforting all the time and especially when we feel down. More specifically dogs have shown how affectionate they can be towards their owners. Yes they are known to be loyal and genuine, but it doesn’t stop at that. Dogs have about 220 million scent receptors compared to our 5 million scent receptors. This enables dogs to sniff out the tiniest changes in scents, and hence, sniff diseases.

Studies have shown that dogs are able to assist remarkably in detecting certain diseases by sniffing out urine, stool and breathe scents. These dogs are trained to warn patients beforehand, and also to get help and assist afterwards.

Below are some of the disease that dogs are able to detect:

  1. Cancer

A number of studies were conducted with dogs who were able to detect cancer in patients. These dogs are able to detect cancer at any stage from 1 to 4. In 2006, five dogs were trained to detect cancer from a breath sample. These dogs were able to accurately detect breast cancer with 88% and lung cancer with 99% accuracy. Other studies used dogs to detect cancer from urine samples.

  1. Narcolepsy

This disease affects the ability to control sleep-wake cycles. One minute you are awake and then suddenly fall asleep. In a study published in 2013 two dogs wear able to detect and warn 11 out of 12 patients with narcolepsy. It was noted that there is a chemical change that happens inside our bodies that causes dogs to detect a different smell that they are trained to notice.

  1. Low Blood Sugar

A 2016 study published in the journal of Diabetes Care found that the dogs detect isoprene, a natural chemical that arises when humans suffer from low blood sugar and dogs can detect.


Written by Farah Khaled
Sources: Mother Nature Network , Web MD


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