A poster and video posted by the Saudi Customs for dogs trained in finding out people suspected of COVID-19 infection Image Credit: Supplied

Cairo: Saudi custom authorities have trained strains of sniffer dogs to detect coronavirus infected people with the at the kingdom’s entry ports, officials announced.

According to Abdullah Al Salloum, the chief of the National Centre for Living Means at the Saudi Customs, sniffer dogs were initially trained to detect the COVID-19 virus.

“This yielded positive and motivating results,” he said. “The succes rate has surpassed 80% during training, for detecting those infected with COVID-19,” he told Al Arabiya TV.

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The official added that the dogs have been trained to recognise very tiny particles of odours. “When an infected person is recognised, this does not mean confirmation of infection, but a mere suspicion. Confirmation is made by lab examination at the Health Ministry. This is just a preventive measure before the passenger enters the terminal.”

Al Salloum noted that the dogs trained for the mission is friendly and peaceful. “They under no circumstances can be aggressive or touch a person. They signal the passenger’s possible coronavirus infection by just sitting down without coming close,” he said.

Those strains of dogs boast superb fitness and agility, the Saudi Customs said on its Twitter account. The dog has over 125 million smell cells and can smell odours 40 feet deep in the earth, it added.