While government agencies and pharmaceutical corporations are engrossed day and night in developing innovative means to detect positive cases of the novel coronavirus, police in Dubai have resolved to do things a little differently.
”K9”, Dubai police department’s security inspection unit, are working with their British-based counterparts to receive samples of Covid-19, which they hope to train sniffer dogs to detect.
According to the head of a UK charity overseeing a similar project, a dog’s ability to spot the scent of the virus offers a fast, effective and non-invasive mean of detection.
Dogs have already been trained to sniff out samples of diseases like cancer, Parkinson’s and bacterial infections, according to the charity.
The man at the helm of Dubai’s move is Major Salah Khalifa Fadil Al-Mazrou’i, who announced that the unit’s plans coincided with their efforts to learn how other forces around the world ensure their sniffer dog remained virus-free, and what potential avenues of canine treatment are available.
Dogs are not susceptible to the virus, unlike their feline friends, according to the science journal Nature. The WHO believes that dogs can neither be infected nor spread the virus to humans.
A daily overnight curfew in the UAE has been extended to April 5.
Late on Monday however, Dubai announced that a 24-hour curfew would be imposed on Al Rase district for at least two weeks.
The UAE has 611 confirmed cases, with five deaths.