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December 02, 2020

What Can Dogs Smell That Humans Can’t?

The Sharpest Nose In the Room

We all know dogs have a superior sense of smell. In fact, research has found that a dog’s nose has 300 million olfactory receptors as compared to a human’s 6 million. So what can they smell that humans can’t? Read on to find out.

The Coronavirus

Researchers at the University of Pennsylvania’s Working Dog Center is working with Labrador Retrievers to see if they can sniff out the coronavirus. If the study is successful the dogs may be able to smell who has the virus to keep them from getting on airplanes, going into hospitals and attending public gatherings.
People Dog’s ability to smell human’s unique scents may make them effective in finding missing persons.

Health Conditions

They can detect certain cancers. Cancerous tumors produce proteins that dogs may be able to detect by sniffing a person’s urine. This may help doctors diagnose and treat patients in the early stages of the disease. Dogs can also detect ovulation and pregnancy. The hormonal imbalance that occurs during ovulation and pregnancy may produce a smell that only dogs are able to detect. Moreover, dogs can detect emotional changes. A change in emotions can bring a hormonal imbalance that dogs can detect by smelling a person’s sweat and breath. No wonder they are often used for emotional support.

Other Smells

Bed bugs’ sweat glands produce an odor that is detectable by humans when a large infestation exists. Dogs’ more sensitive noses smell smaller infestations that can be helpful in stopping a bed bug problem before it gets out of hand. Dog can also detect changes in heat. Research shows that the sensory cells at the end of a dog’s nose act as infrared sensors detecting slight changes in temperature. This makes them good at smelling when another human is approaching, and it could prevent a break in.

A Super-Smelling Sleuth

Dogs’ super smelling powers can be used in a wide variety of applications and can even be a lifesaver in some situations. What does your dog smell that you can’t?

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