- 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.
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.
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.
“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. “