Saudi Arabia’s customs authority is training dogs to sniff out individuals infected with coronavirus at all customs entry points as part of the government’s continued efforts to contain the spread of COVID-19.
“The training had an 80 percent success rate and the center is currently working on completing all the requirements that guarantee the readiness of the teams,” Abdullah al-Salloum, director of the National Center for Living Means at the Saudi Customs said in a statement.
“The center undertakes the task of training dogs in many programs, mainly for combating terrorism. The programs cover detection of smuggled goods, including drugs, explosives, weapons, currency and tobacco,” al-Salloum said in a video posted by Saudi Customs.
Dogs sniff out COVID-19
Sniffer dogs have long been trained to detect diseases including malaria, cancer and Parkinson’s disease.
Several recent studies into training dogs to sniff out coronavirus infection in humans, are now showing encouraging results.
Researchers in the UK, US, France and Chile are attempting to train dogs to detect COVID-19.
The UAE announced early July that it has successfully completed trials of using K9 police sniffer dogs to detect COVID-19 patients.