Nut detection dogs have made the headlines a couple of times in recent weeks.
First, there was Nano the poodle, who protects Yasmine Tornbald, from Malvern. Yasmine is nut allergic and will react to nuts if she eats them or “comes into close contact with them”. Her dog, Nano, was trained as a medical alert dog and he can now detect nut odours in both food and the environment.
Next in the news was golden-doodle LilyBelle, who looks after seven-year-old Meghan Weingarth from Georgia, USA. Meghan is allergic to peanuts and almonds and also has a condition called Tuberous Sclerosis Complex (TSC). As well being able to detect when Meghan is about to have a seizure (on account of her TSC), LilyBelle raises a paw to warn Meghan if her food contains nuts.
Reading these stories, I began thinking there may be a job for our resident beagle-of-leisure yet…
Saying that, my son has, so far, not reacted to airborne peanut proteins. However, I can imagine that, if your allergy was so severe that you regularly reacted to peanut or nut traces in the air, then a nut detection dog would be a godsend.
Nano was trained by the charity “Medical Detection Dogs”, who are based in Milton Keynes. For more information, together with details of how to apply, see their website: Medical Detection Dogs.
- BBC News, Dog trained to detect nuts changes life of allergy sufferer (2 July 2013).
- Worcester News, Poodle is trained to sniff out nuts (26 July 2013).
- Daily Mail, I’m nuts about you! Six-year-old girl with deadly allergy lives a normal life thanks to her dog trained to sniff out trouble by Anna Edwards (8 August 2013).
- Medical Detection Dogs charity.