Who knew that DVDs and bed bugs have particular smells? Though their fragrances may be elusive to humans, they are unmistakable to dogs.
It is no big surprise to anyone that a dog's sense of smell is very advanced, and can be extremely specialized. There are, however, a few rather surprising and bizarre scents that can be identified by well-trained canines -- some of which have the potential to save lives.
1. Infections. Dogs have been used to sniff out Foulbrood, a deadly bacterial infection that affects honeybee larvae, and can wipe out entire bee colonies if left untreated. Dogs can do an apiary inspection in 20 minutes, whereas a human would require roughly an hour.
2. Diabetes/Seizures. Dogs can smell and give indication of the onslaught of diabetic attacks and seizures. "I've taught (my dog) to recognize the odor, and the odor signals to him a big reward, so he knows to come up to me and recognize that odor," says Kimberley Cox, a dog trainer at the Medical Detection Dogs center who also suffers from diabetes. Her dog Rory is able to recognize the early signs of an attack, and is trained to bring Kimberley her insulin kit.