If you have ever had or ever known anyone who had been in the hospital and gotten C-difﬁcile (Clostridium difﬁcile), you know they were really sick. I have heard people say that the C-difﬁcle was worse than the problem that put them in the hospital in the ﬁrst place.
The British Medical Journal (BMJ), just released a study showing how dogs can accurately sniff out this problematic hospital-acquired infection. Why not? The government has trained dogs to sniff out drugs, money and other things. Most bacterias have a unique smell to them so it would be a great idea to train a dog’s nose to search for the culprit.
Here’s video of a two year old beagle trained to identify the smell of C-difﬁcile in a hospital. It’s a great little video to watch, especially if you are an animal lover.
Just to remind you, C-diff is commonly found in United States hospitals particularly in people who have received antimicrobial. This bacteria causes toxin mediated intestinal disease, with symptoms ranging from mild diarrhea to severe pseudomembranous colitis and toxic megacolon. The bacteria can be so bad that isolation needs to be done. It can be transmitted by personal contact or the environment.
If dogs can help control this dreadful bacteria, they really are man’s best friends in more ways than one.
image courtesy of: www.drsamrobbins.com