Has your pup ever woken you up by sniffing your face, or perhaps offering some affectionate ‘snoot boops’? Does Fido sometimes get completely obsessed with a scent he’s picked up on his walk? Your canine companion’s cute nose is one of his most adorable features. It’s also pretty amazing in and of itself! A vet discusses Man’s Best Friend’s sniffer below.
We all know that Fido has a very keen sense of smell. However, the actual data on this is quite mind-boggling. Dogs have as many as 300 million scent receptors in their nose. (In contrast, we only have a mere 6 million.) To put that into perspective, our canine buddies can sniff out a single drop of liquid in 20 Olympic-sized pools.
A Helping Nose
We’ve long made use of Fido’s astute nose for hunting and tracking. However, these days, one can find pups trained to specifically sniff out many different things, including bombs, drugs, dead bodies, and even bedbugs. Some of our furry pals are even able to detect illnesses and imbalances in the human body, and can smell things like cancer, upcoming seizures, and blood sugar changes.
Here’s another fun fact: your furry best friend’s nose has a unique print. Much like our fingerprints, dogs’ noseprints are all different, with no two being the same. So, if your canine pal like making nose art on your windows, you have some one-of-a-kind masterpieces? Try using vinegar and newspaper to clean Fido’s ‘canvas’ so he can start on his next project.
As you have probably noticed, Fido is always on the ‘lookout’ for new smells. There’s actually a name for this: neophilia! Sniffing things is deeply instinctive to dogs, and also provides them with beneficial mental stimulation.
Wet Or Dry
You may have heard that if Fido’s nose is dry, it means he’s sick. That actually isn’t true. However, there is an advantage to having a wet nose. The extra moisture helps trap scent particles, making it easier for your four-legged friend to smell things.
Pigs have often been used to sniff out truffles. However, they also damage the truffles in the process. Turns out, Man’s Best Friend has been more than happy to help solve that problem. Dogs—particularly the Lagotto Romagnolo breed—are now often used instead of pigs.
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