Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Are you sick? Let me sniff you...

I read such an amazing story in the newspaper this morning, "Dogs nearly perfect in sniffing cancers".

Apparently, a clinic in CA has trained 5 dogs (3 labs and 2 Portuguese Water Dogs) to detect lung cancer with 99% accuracy. 99% accuracy!! The dogs are able to detect the cancer by smelling people's breath. They were also able to detect breast cancer with 88% accuracy which apparently is the same percentage of accuracy that a mammogram is able to detect it.

Gee, if given a choice, I'd much rather have a dog smell my breath than have my boobs squished and squashed during a mammogram. But hey, that's just me!

In this study, the five dogs were borrowed from owners and Guide Dogs for the Blind. David, Juliar and Jess and Jetta - if you're reading, have you ever heard about this? And what about you, Hank? I'm sure you could do this if you tried 'cause you're so smart. The dogs were trained to sniff as if they were detecting for bombs. They repeatedly heard a clicker and got a treat when they found a desired odor in many identical smelling spots.

Truly amazing! Treat your pets well - who knows, they may save your life some day. Sampson just enjoys sniffing Fluffy right now, but you never know...


Blogger Uisce said...

These stories just blow my mind. Like the woman that had the seizure and her dog dialed 9-1-1. Amazing!!

1/31/2006 11:02 AM  
Blogger Suz said...

What a wonderful article. Just amazing what dogs can do.

My pets always seem to know when Iam not feeling well.

Hugs Suz

1/31/2006 12:20 PM  
Blogger David said...

Katherine, yes I have herd of some dogs being able to detect cancer.

One dog detected his owners heart attack prior to him having it. The dog was making so much fuss that several people stopped to see what the dog was doing and then his owner had a full arrest. The people performed CPR and saved the man's life.

However, Seizure Alert dogs are only trained, what to DO in the event of a seizure, press the Emergency button (911) which has been installed, on the clients phone and bark for help etc. 0nly 5% of all dogs can detect or alert to seizers before they occur. So far as I know now, these dogs can't be trained to detect the seizure, yet.

Detector Dogs for; explosives, narcotics, band food imports, cadavers. Medical conditions also have odors people can't detect. Amazing isn't it?


1/31/2006 1:12 PM  
Blogger Eunice said...

Wow, that is so amazing. Yet another insight into the healing power of animals. First, they detect that you are sick, then they cuddle up with you to help you feel better.

Thanks for visiting my blog too! :)

1/31/2006 3:16 PM  
Blogger kdubs said...

Wow, that's AWESOME.

1/31/2006 6:23 PM  
Blogger Lisa said...

animals are amazing, aren't they? Cool story!!!

2/01/2006 12:13 AM  
Blogger Jess and Jetta said...

I have heard of dogs being used to assist people with narclepsy *hmm perhaps spelled wrong*, and for lung cancer, but not breast cancer. I would have to agree with you. I would rather a dog sniff me than have a huge needle and lots of squishing happening to my breasts.

2/02/2006 4:21 PM  
Blogger JuliaR said...

I hadn't heard that they borrowed the dogs from other working positions but it makes sense, I suppose, to use a dog that is already trained for something. But I had definitely heard of the cancer-sniffing dogs. Wonderful creatures, dogs.

2/05/2006 5:30 PM  

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