There is no evidence which suggests that a dog with no training can smell cancer. However, dogs can be trained to sniff out cancer patients from a group of people. Dogs see the world through their nose as they have a strong sense of smell. Dogs are quite perceptive as they can notice even a small change and try to nurse in their way. A study has shown that ‘dog therapy’ can soothe people with terminal conditions like cancer, as spending time with dogs reduces stress and anxiety.
That being the case, a published study analysed if ordinary dogs can smell cancer and showed a positive result to state that with basic training, dogs can smell cancer. This result has paved a new way of examining cancer through exhaled breath to understand the specific chemicals released in the air that confirms cancer. Moreover, a US based start-up called BioscentDx further conducted human trials to confirm that trained dogs can sniff cancer among people who are already diagnosed but have not yet begun with chemotherapy or any other invasive treatment.
Another research shows that dogs can detect cancer. But further research is needed to understand if trained dogs can identify people at greater risk and people who have benign or malignant cancer.
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