Prayer #144: For the Use of Dogs to Detect COVID-19
For some time, dogs, with their heightened sense of smell, have been used to detect the presence of various diseases, including diabetes, malaria, and tuberculosis. And now, according to preliminary research performed at the University of Veterinary Medicine in Hannover, Germany, dogs can detect SARS-Cov-2 virus, which causes COVID-19. In the study, the dogs were presented with 1,012 samples randomly, and they correctly identified 157 positive samples and 792 negative samples, for an overall detection rate of 94%.
"We think that this works because the metabolic processes in the body of a diseased patient is completely changed," Professor Maren von Köckritz-Blickwede, one of the researchers, said. "And we think that the dogs are able to detect a specific smell of the metabolic changes that occur in those patients," i.e., an odor that humans cannot smell. The next step in this study will be to see if dogs can differentiate between COVID-19 and various other influenzas.
Already though, some airports are beginning to use dogs for COVID screening. Each dog can potentially screen up to 250 people per hour. The U.K. has plans to employ dogs at key entry points into the country, including airports. Dogs are already at use in other places, including the airport at the country of Dubai, where the dogs are demonstrating a 91% detection rate.
Using dogs to screen for COVID-19 could prove to be important in stemming the advance of the virus. It could also be a way to restore the pre-COVID volume of air travel.
As dogs are used at airports, pray that they would continue to be very effective in detecting COVID-carrying individuals. Pray that this would turn out to be a very effective way of combating the spread of the virus.
2 Sam. 22:32: "For who is God, but the Lord? And who is a Rock, except our God?"