Corona detection dogs are popular and efficient


In September, the City of Vantaa took corona detection dogs to help with testing at Helsinki-Vantaa Airport. Dogs have showed to be effective and popular both among travelers and in the international media. The ease and functionality of testing have been praised.

At the ”sniffing station”, the testee goes to the booth and takes samples of himself by wiping his skin with small gauze folds. He puts the wipe samples in a scent beaker and hands them out of the opening to the dog handler on the other side of the booth. The dog sniffs the line of scent beakers and marks a possible infectious one. The results will arrive in an instant.

The results from the first month of testing and the feedback received from passengers have been very good. Passengers have been willing to wait for long periods of time to get tested. The dog can identify the Coronavirus in humans earlier than in laboratory tests. Although dogs have proven to be accurate, the canine testing is still in the research phase.

Anna Hielm-Björkman, a docent in veterinary medicine at the University of Helsinki, says that a little over 2,000 people have been tested in the airport, 13 of whom have given a positive sample.

The research results will be reported at the end of the year. Among other things, they will see how the tests performed by dogs compare with PCR tests performed through the pharynx. The results will also provide guidance on how to expand the corona detection dog operation in the future.

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