Dogs Can Be Trained to Sniff Out Prostate Cancer, French Researchers Say

Male readers, take heart: The next time a dog trots up to you and puts his nose where it shouldn't be, he may just be...

Maria Goodavage  |  Jun 2nd 2010


Al Roker and a dog who seems to be a natural...

Male readers, take heart: The next time a dog trots up to you and puts his nose where it shouldn’t be, he may just be using you as a test subject for his new-found prostate-cancer-sniffing skills. French researchers reported yesterday at a meeting of the American Urological Association, in San Francisco, that dogs can be trained to sniff out the unique scent of chemicals released by prostate tumors.

If the research can be replicated, it could have significantly better reliability than standard PSA tests, because of fewer false positives, the Los Angeles Times reports. Out of 66 times, the trained dog in the trials detected correctly 63 times. There were three false positives, and no false negatives. By contrast, most positive PSA tests are false positives (about 70 percent), according to Virginia Commonwealth University.

The sniff test actually doesn’t involve contact with a human. Dogs sniff the urine sample, not a person. Researchers are also studying the possibility of dogs being able to detect lung, bladder, and breast cancers. Talk about man’s and woman’s best friend…