Dog taught to sniff out COVID-19 in Austria

Dog taught to sniff out COVID-19 in Austria
  • Clock-gray 09:47
  • calendar-gray 15 December 2020

Austrian military have presented the first service dog taught to detect coronavirus by smell using face masks of infected people, the Austrian Defense Ministry reported Monday, APA reports citing TASS.

The Belgian shepherd named Fantasy Forever vom Seetalblick is taking part in a military research program which should reveal whether dogs can tell between healthy and infected people. The program’s interim report confirmed that the animal can indeed detect face masks of infected patients. "The first stage of the trial for the dog is moving to the practical phase," the defense agency noted.

A second dog is finishing the first stage of trial now, while two more dogs will learn the skill before the end of 2020. It is expected that the project will complete in the first quarter of 2021. Before that, all the dogs will have to go through other practical tests to sniff out coronavirus using masks of infected people. In the end, the agency plans to conclude whether it is possible to use sniffer dogs in real conditions, airports for example.

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