• COVID-19 detector dogs were figuratively released at Miami International Airport this week.
  • Cobra and One Betta will sniff employee masks for the virus in their sweat and breath.
  • In published trials, dogs were successful 96-99% of the time.

Miami International Airport this week kicked off a 30-day pilot program with Cobra and One Betta, a pair of professionally trained COVID-19 detector dogs.

“We are fortunate in Miami-Dade County to have the first COVID sniffer dog – in fact, we have a few – and this is the first airport anywhere that uses this type of technology at home. our four-legged friends “, Miami- The chairman of the Dade commission, Jose” Pepe “Diaz, said CBS News.

A Betta, a Dutch Shepherd, waits for an order to sniff masks for the smell of COVID-19 at Miami International Airport on September 08, 2021 in Miami, Florida.

A Betta, a Dutch Shepherd, waits for an order to sniff masks for the smell of COVID-19 at Miami International Airport on September 08, 2021 in Miami, Florida.

Joe Raedle / Getty Images


Cobra, a Belgian Malinois, and One Betta, a Dutch Shepherd, have been trained to detect COVID-19 through a sniff test and to alert when it is present.

They were trained at Florida International University’s Forensic and Justice Center, according to the airport. In published, double-blind, peer-reviewed trials, dogs accurately detected the virus 96-99% of the time.

A Betta, a Dutch Shepherd, sniffs a mask for the smell of COVID-19 at Miami International Airport on September 08, 2021 in Miami, Florida.

A Betta, a Dutch Shepherd, sniffs a mask for the smell of COVID-19 at Miami International Airport on September 08, 2021 in Miami, Florida.

Joe Raedle / Getty Images


Cobra and One Betta will be used at an employee security checkpoint, where they will sniff each employee’s masks to detect the virus through their sweat and breath, which will contain an odor caused by metabolic changes caused by the virus in one person.

If the dog detects the virus, then the person will undergo a quick COVID test.

Cobra, a Belgian Malinois, waits for an order from Denise Webb before sniffing masks for the smell of COVID-19 at Miami International Airport on September 08, 2021 in Miami, Florida.

Cobra, a Belgian Malinois, waits for an order from Denise Webb before sniffing masks for the smell of COVID-19 at Miami International Airport on September 08, 2021 in Miami, Florida.

Joe Raedle / Getty Images


“Being able to apply decades of research in this way, providing an extra layer of protection for Miami International Airport employees, is a lesson in humility,” said Kenneth G. Furton, president and professor of chemistry and of Biochemistry at Florida International University. in a declaration. “These dogs are another valuable tool that we can use to help us live with this ongoing pandemic. “

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