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Growing body of research says dogs really can smell cancer
August 17th, 2011
07:00 PM ET

Growing body of research says dogs really can smell cancer

A new study adds to the body of research suggesting that "man’s best friend" may actually be able to smell cancer.

Researchers in Germany found that dogs were able to pick up on the scent of organic compounds linked to the presence of lung cancer in the human body, and that their keen sense of smell may be useful for the early detection of the disease.

Four family dogs – two  German shepherds, one Australian shepherd and one Labrador retriever – smelled test tubes containing breath samples of 220 patients, both those with lung cancer and those without it. The dogs were trained to lie down in front of the test tubes where they smelled lung cancer and touch the vial with their noses. According to the study, the dogs successfully identified lung cancer in 71 out of 100 patients with the disease.

And that’s not all. Researchers also tested patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. “COPD is quite common in patients with lung cancer and we were not sure if the dogs could tell the difference between both diseases,” explains Enole Boedeker, an author on the study who practices general thoracic surgery in Stuttgart, Germany. “The dogs could recognize the cancer sample as easily as between the breath samples of the healthy study participants,” Boedeker says. The study is published in the European Respiratory Journal.

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This isn’t the first study to use dogs’ heightened sense of smell to identify disease in humans. Over the years researchers have theorized that cancer may actually have a detectable scent - cancer cells may produce chemical compounds that circulate throughout the body and can be breathed out of the lungs in a gaseous form. The use of canine scent to detect these compounds has shown promise in sniffing out breast cancer, bowel cancer, colon cancer, COPD and lung cancer, and even type 1 diabetes.

“This is probably the most sophisticated study I've seen on this topic,” says Dr. Len Lichtenfeld, deputy chief medical officer of the American Cancer Society. Lichtenfeld has been following research on sniffer dogs and blogged about the topic for ACS. “More and more studies are reinforcing the possibility that this is very real,” he says.

But don’t expect to see Fido in the office the next time you visit the doctor; the future clinical implications remain unknown.

“We've seen this happen enough to suggest there are compounds in the breath of patients with cancer that could provide an early warning about he presence of cancer in the body, but we still do not know exactly what those compounds are,” Lichtenfeld says. “We can’t pick out what the dogs smell.”

Researchers say sniffer dogs are a promising “detection device,” but more studies are needed to help identify the specific detectable markers in order to create screening methods.

“Unfortunately,” the study authors conclude, “dogs cannot communicate the biochemistry of the scent of cancer.”


soundoff (281 Responses)
  1. rose helen militello

    i love dogs and have always had dogs.they can be trained to sniff out solutions used in arson.they do an incredible job as service dogs.they are trained to visit the sick in hospitals and many nursing homes have live-in dogs and cats the residents get a great deal of comfort from them.i also have cats.my animals are a source of entertainment for me.my animals are neutered and spayed and i don't let them loose to run in the neighborhood,however we have many stray cats on our street due to irresponsible cat owners.service dogs are also helpful to people who have seizures,the dog is able to alert the person that a seizure is on-coming,therefore they can prepare themselves.

    August 18, 2011 at 12:35 | Report abuse | Reply
    • WeirdLady

      Is this a long story? What a manifesto...

      August 18, 2011 at 12:43 | Report abuse |
    • Chris

      nah, not a manifesto, rose is all to aware the human beings have an inate tendency to exploit animals. Their record of animal treatment is an abomination. Using animals to detect cancer is a great idea, but you can be rest assured that someone out there that will make huge profits mass producing 'cancer dogs" in factories living in abysmal conditions, treated cruelly and only allowed to smell test tubes all day long with no sun or freedom to run. You wait and see. Humans will always exploit when given the chance.

      August 18, 2011 at 13:25 | Report abuse |
    • Metropl

      Chris. I agree that people are horrible to dogs. Once we solve that problem, we should focus on how horrible we treat children.

      August 18, 2011 at 13:36 | Report abuse |
    • Howie

      I like dogs too. However, they are there for us to exploit. Like all animals and plants and minerals, etc., they are a natural resource that should be used for the benefit of humankind. Lower mammals are still lower. Unnecessary cruelty is just that, unnecessary, but when it is necessary it should not be reviled.

      August 18, 2011 at 13:58 | Report abuse |
    • Shane

      @Howie-Animals are here for us to exploit?!!! What an ignorant and disturbing comment. Your so-called "lower mammals" could include humans, such as yourself, who believe everything on this earth was meant for your enjoyment and destruction only. I'd rather have the company of a dog any day to some lower mammal like you.

      August 18, 2011 at 16:15 | Report abuse |
    • Chris

      Oh brother Howie, are you really such a dinasaur. Isn't it time for you to leave Jurrasic Park. Mahatma Gandhi said you can judge a country by its treatment of animals. You, Howie are a 3rd world country.

      August 18, 2011 at 22:15 | Report abuse |
  2. Hippo

    just testing. CNN is blocking

    August 18, 2011 at 12:35 | Report abuse | Reply
    • aubrie

      They do it all the time... I've started copying all of my posts before submitting, and if they won't take it, I simply paste it and chage a few words... It usually works.

      August 18, 2011 at 13:28 | Report abuse |
    • JeramieH

      The forum backend is actually via Disqus. You can watch it in a packet trace.

      August 18, 2011 at 16:45 | Report abuse |
  3. Eric Jensen

    I love dogs. Studies like this show why the planet and the animal kingdom needs to be protected. We may be killing the organic cure to deadly diseases without knowing it.

    August 18, 2011 at 12:38 | Report abuse | Reply
    • karek40

      You mean when I eat that hamgurger I might be contributing to not finding a cure for something?

      August 18, 2011 at 13:00 | Report abuse |
    • mcg

      I detect sarcasm. But considering beef production is one of the major causes of deforestation and rain forest depletion, yes you probably are.

      August 18, 2011 at 13:25 | Report abuse |
    • jayman419

      When you eat hamburger, you are contributing to the rise in antibiotic-resistant germs.

      August 18, 2011 at 14:49 | Report abuse |
    • williamb

      "When you eat hamburger, you are contributing to the rise in antibiotic-resistant germs." Great then these germ will one day kill most of humanity then the earth can return to homiostatis

      August 18, 2011 at 15:18 | Report abuse |
    • Istenno

      i don't think " homiostatis" is quite the right word, but the earth would definitely be a more inviting place. is it awful that i would much rather live here WITHOUT most of my species?

      August 18, 2011 at 15:44 | Report abuse |
  4. letsgomets2011

    As I always tell my doggie, "You doggies are a good lot.":)

    To those whose dogguses smelled something amiss: get those doggies a steak.:) They deserve it.

    August 18, 2011 at 12:40 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Andi

      I love the story, & your comment. All 'dogguses' have the potential to be a good lot. If only everyone treated them well.

      August 18, 2011 at 13:16 | Report abuse |
  5. DogSniff

    My dog bit my grandpa's arm, we rushed him to the hospital, and they found he had cancer. The dog that is.

    August 18, 2011 at 12:41 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Thanks

      That was funny. Thanks for the laugh.

      August 18, 2011 at 13:14 | Report abuse |
  6. Gooooo Boyyyyyyy

    Now that's such a Gooooo Boyyyyyyy....

    August 18, 2011 at 12:42 | Report abuse | Reply
  7. Joan

    I have been around dogs all my life, owned, trained, rescued, several dogs! There is no special breed that has this ability. Its like a parent knowing their child. A dog KNOWS his owner. A dog can sense a different smell to his owner. A dog can smell oddities about us. I have heard these types of stories since I was a child. Our (your) dogs know us, love us, and smell us and when a different odor is coming from our bodies, they pick up on this and they react. They naturally have this "super" nose and this ability should be respected. Those people that are dog haters have homework to do. Our higher power gave us the tool (dog) to detect a problem, we should wake up and use the tools provided for us as they are flawless and show no partiality. Science is spending billions to try and duplicate what dog has been doing for years. Save this country some money and just admit.....you can't duplicate nature!

    August 18, 2011 at 12:46 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Carol

      Good post Joan. Dogs also smell fear from a human, and some dogs bite because of it. My little maltese anticipates every move I make and he is there to help and guide me. This is a breed trait of Maltese, some more so than others.

      August 18, 2011 at 13:23 | Report abuse |
    • aubrie

      When I've come home from the hospital on several occasions, especially after surgery, my dog sniffs and licks all over me and won't leave my side... They especially sniff any kind of wound. She kept putting her head in my lap like she was showing me she was sorry I was hurt. Even jumped in the bed with me for comfort and to protect me. My husband help me up out of a chair, and I yelped in pain. Her ears shot up and was right by me, giving him the evil eye.....

      August 18, 2011 at 13:32 | Report abuse |
    • Paul

      Well said. My dog can read me like a book.

      August 18, 2011 at 14:04 | Report abuse |
    • dogfan

      If dogs smell fear, a lot of people must have fear coming out of their butts.

      August 18, 2011 at 14:46 | Report abuse |
  8. Your Name Here

    It's called a "Lab" test.

    August 18, 2011 at 12:48 | Report abuse | Reply
  9. skyder

    So maybe you will go to the doctor and istead of a cat-scan, you'll get a dog-scan

    August 18, 2011 at 12:49 | Report abuse | Reply
  10. Jim

    The next time your dog is sniffing somone's butt you can tell them he's doing a colorectal cancer screening and there's no charge.

    August 18, 2011 at 12:56 | Report abuse | Reply
    • karek40

      Or charge

      August 18, 2011 at 13:03 | Report abuse |
  11. cz452

    "Wow, Rex likes you!"

    August 18, 2011 at 12:58 | Report abuse | Reply
  12. Joe

    Bring that dog to Washington and watch his head exploded....

    August 18, 2011 at 12:59 | Report abuse | Reply
  13. erich2112x

    I'd sooner believe David Berkowits.

    August 18, 2011 at 13:02 | Report abuse | Reply
  14. Jeff

    I may have colon cancer , my dog is always snilffing my rear end

    August 18, 2011 at 13:03 | Report abuse | Reply
    • karek40

      Try wiping better I found that helps lol

      August 18, 2011 at 13:04 | Report abuse |
    • WhatWhatWhat?

      I must have shweenal cancer, my friends german shepard always sticks her head in my crotch every time I see her.

      August 18, 2011 at 13:21 | Report abuse |
  15. william

    i like dogs

    August 18, 2011 at 13:03 | Report abuse | Reply
  16. william

    they are cool

    August 18, 2011 at 13:04 | Report abuse | Reply
  17. erich2112x

    I think the side of my couch has cancer.

    August 18, 2011 at 13:08 | Report abuse | Reply
    • NotQuiteRight

      My girlfriends cat definitely doesn't have cancer.

      August 18, 2011 at 13:23 | Report abuse |
  18. sdfjk

    So the dog sniffs out that you have cancer? I'm not sure if that's good or bad. Your dog just told you you're going to die. Last I checked, there is no cure for cancer. So if I get it, I don't want to live the rest of my life knowing it and just waiting to die.

    August 18, 2011 at 13:10 | Report abuse | Reply
    • WhatWhatWhat?

      You are quite the idiot, I can tell.

      August 18, 2011 at 13:13 | Report abuse |
    • bobincal

      Some cancers are 100% deadly: ovarian and pancreatic. But many cancers can be cured if caught early.

      August 18, 2011 at 13:34 | Report abuse |
    • Dog

      I smell stupidity!

      August 18, 2011 at 13:35 | Report abuse |
    • sdfjk

      Stupidity? You're an anonymous little lowlife who probably still lives with mommy and daddy. P.O.S.

      August 18, 2011 at 13:39 | Report abuse |
    • Dog

      Yup, I told you I smelled it.

      August 18, 2011 at 13:50 | Report abuse |
    • alert alert

      you're ignorant. you've never heard of anyone beating cancer? there's no cure for the 'common cold' either, but not everyone dies from it :P

      August 18, 2011 at 13:59 | Report abuse |
    • MSBJC

      sdfjk, not all cancer diagnoses mean you are going to die.

      August 18, 2011 at 14:06 | Report abuse |
    • Haha

      Guess u better chk again

      August 18, 2011 at 14:16 | Report abuse |
    • Really, 100% death wish?

      At bobincal-pancreatic cancer is not always 100% I have 2 family members that are no longer living with pancreatic cancer. if they catch it early enough it can be resected from the pancrease and the cancer doesn't spread. I will say the majority of the time Pancreatic cancer is not found in time-usually is has spread to somewhere else thus being untreatable-nothing in life is 100% except that we will all eventually die...so really we are just all waiting around to die.

      August 18, 2011 at 15:00 | Report abuse |
    • no

      yep, it's official. sdfjk is an idiot.

      August 18, 2011 at 15:01 | Report abuse |
  19. NotQuiteRight

    “We can’t pick out what the dogs smell.” Are you out of your mind? It's called gas chromatography and mass spectrometry. It's been around for a while now, and is used in nearly all chemical manufacturing to test gas and liquid samples. The fact that this article doesn't mention the use of those instruments makes me wonder if anyone with half a brain is running the dog tests.

    August 18, 2011 at 13:12 | Report abuse | Reply
    • D

      The instruments may not have the proper sensitivity for one, and for another it is possible that there are many, many compounds released by the lungs, only one of which is the diagnostic compound. The dogs know what it is, but we don't.

      August 18, 2011 at 13:58 | Report abuse |
    • abqtim

      Hey Mr. Smart which of hundreds of compounds is it that the dog smells then? Or, perhaps it's a combination of multiple compounds that combine to make a unique scent. Which is it? These machines only give a list of what was detected it doesn't say what they do or in what concentration is needed to cause cancer. Like the article said “dogs cannot communicate the biochemistry of the scent of cancer.”

      August 18, 2011 at 15:11 | Report abuse |
  20. Jacksonian

    Spell DOG backwards. :)

    August 18, 2011 at 13:12 | Report abuse | Reply
    • WhatWhatWhat?

      Sounds like a waste of time to me.

      August 18, 2011 at 13:14 | Report abuse |
    • alert alert

      wow

      August 18, 2011 at 14:00 | Report abuse |
  21. Sue Lowry

    Eight months ago my husband was diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer. A month or so before he was diagnosed, our german sheperd mix dog , who worships her master, would no longer attempt to lick him or even get near his face. After he began chemo and went into remission 6 weeks later, our dog returned to kissing and licking my husband in the face. As a health teacher, I immediately recongnized what was going on with the scent of the disease and our dog's ability to detect it.
    Keep up the great work.

    August 18, 2011 at 13:12 | Report abuse | Reply
    • WhatWhatWhat?

      As a health teacher, do you advise allowing dogs, who can lick their a$$ by the way, to lick the face of a human? I mean, sometimes it happens, but, after seeing where that tongue has been, sometimes I wonder.

      August 18, 2011 at 13:18 | Report abuse |
  22. erich2112x

    The expression on the dog's face says, 'A human is sticking a plastic tube up one of my nostrils and if I didn't need my next meal I'd bite the fck out of him.

    August 18, 2011 at 13:14 | Report abuse | Reply
  23. Santa Claus

    My cat drew up the engineering plans for constructing my own working Death Star.

    My dog eats his own poop.

    August 18, 2011 at 13:20 | Report abuse | Reply
    • explicate

      Nerdy and loves cats, wow what a great catch.

      August 18, 2011 at 14:01 | Report abuse |
    • Santa Claus

      I hope you enjoy your incoming Casey Anthony pogs for Christmas.

      HO HO HO

      August 18, 2011 at 14:04 | Report abuse |
    • Old Crone

      Your dog is missing something vital from his diiet. Read the ingredient panel on his dog food and buy a quality (read objective articles on dog food online – NOT from a manufacturer) dog food.

      August 18, 2011 at 15:29 | Report abuse |
  24. w1nluv

    Dogs rock!!!

    August 18, 2011 at 13:27 | Report abuse | Reply
  25. Dave ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Hey, will you guys do me a favor and visit HelpFaye.ORG a friend of mine is fighting for her life.... Thank you..

    August 18, 2011 at 13:31 | Report abuse | Reply
    • erich2112x

      Finish blowing me before we talk business.

      August 18, 2011 at 13:37 | Report abuse |
    • trigtwit...America's favorite tard baby.

      ** poot **

      August 18, 2011 at 14:40 | Report abuse |
  26. garwin1

    My 3 weenie dogs are far right-wing fascists. Everything is for them and nothing is for everybody else.

    August 18, 2011 at 13:31 | Report abuse | Reply
    • jayman419

      My wife named my cat Chairman Mao. I can deal with the land reforms. But every morning he wakes me up to personally collect a report on our current agricultural status.

      August 18, 2011 at 15:00 | Report abuse |
    • Brett

      Holy crap! We have a future election war, Garwin! My 2 dogs are liberals. They lay on the couch all day and require that I feed them, are infatuated with each others anal orifices, love to lick my face and love on me....all while crapping on my floor and ruining all of my stuff. They love the neighbors chihuahua and let him into our yard ALL the time (crappy guard dogs), are not smart enough to learn even the simplest commands, appear to love being subservient to me and I can't talk to them without them drooling all over. Oh and when they see the neighbor kids they get all excited. Sheesh, who woulda known that dogs can have political affiliations!

      August 18, 2011 at 15:55 | Report abuse |
  27. bobincal

    Ah cats, the other white meat!

    August 18, 2011 at 13:32 | Report abuse | Reply
  28. Kathy

    If you are interested in a new idea concerning the origin of cancer that does not involve genetic mutation please read Schiel KA 2006 An etiologic model proposing that sporadic adult-onset carcinoma is extramedullary hematopoiesis. Medical Hypotheses vol. 67, 93-109.

    August 18, 2011 at 13:46 | Report abuse | Reply
    • buffalogal36

      Could you please repeat that?

      August 18, 2011 at 15:18 | Report abuse |
    • JeramieH

      Ah yes, in a non-peer-reviewed journal kicked from PubMed because of their lack of editorial rigor.

      There's perfectly good reasons why the peer-review process exists.

      August 18, 2011 at 16:50 | Report abuse |
  29. Flora

    Dogs – God's other gift to man (besides love).

    August 18, 2011 at 13:48 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Dog

      What about the other gifts? Like cancer, Alzheimer's & birth defects, don't forget those. Oh, and leaving us in the dark about everything and not showing up to explain, that's a good one.

      August 18, 2011 at 13:55 | Report abuse |
    • ldean50

      To Flora . . . I haven't been to church in 50 years, but I do know this. God said man's heart leans toward evil (Genesis about verse 23, I think) . . . bad things come from man, not God, god, Allah, Buddah, Mohammend, Krishna, Yeweh or any other name that is used.

      August 18, 2011 at 14:17 | Report abuse |
  30. DanoMcRoo

    Garwin1........we should take your 3 dachshunds and my 3 dachshunds and start a right-wing canine party. Sieg Heil......LOL

    August 18, 2011 at 13:49 | Report abuse | Reply
  31. ajk68

    Why don't these scientists just put some samples into a gas chromatograph and figure out what the signalling compound is?

    August 18, 2011 at 13:51 | Report abuse | Reply
    • D

      i am thinking it could be an instrument sensitivity issue, or perhaps a signal to noise issue.

      August 18, 2011 at 14:02 | Report abuse |
    • ajk68

      I would be highly surprised if the chromatograph didn't have better sensitivity.

      August 19, 2011 at 14:12 | Report abuse |
  32. rjp3

    DUH - Cancer is nothing more than old dead cells the body will not reject as it is supposed to do.

    I am not surprised dogs can smell dead cells.

    August 18, 2011 at 14:09 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Brett

      Like, omigosh! Duh is right!

      August 18, 2011 at 15:46 | Report abuse |
    • JeramieH

      Cancer isn't "dead" cells at all. They're very aggressively alive and reproduce at dangerously high rates because their reproductive self-control no longer works. But thanks for trying.

      August 18, 2011 at 16:52 | Report abuse |
  33. lawlzabob

    yeah well i can smell dogs. now what?

    August 18, 2011 at 14:16 | Report abuse | Reply
  34. vivian

    I love dogs they are allways there for us. they are better then men.

    August 18, 2011 at 14:32 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Brett

      Guessing your ole man traded you in for 2 20's eh?

      August 18, 2011 at 15:45 | Report abuse |
  35. SkidPlate

    If I could only train a dog to find the ladies when they are feeling in a desirable state, if you know what i mean. I have absolutely no game.

    August 18, 2011 at 14:38 | Report abuse | Reply
  36. gailschum

    Kinda gives new meaning to the idea of a 'Lab' test ....

    August 18, 2011 at 14:50 | Report abuse | Reply
  37. Roger Ogilivy Thornhill

    If we were to wait to address abuse of dogs until we had eradicated abuse of humans, nothing would ever get done. As in everyday life, we can't have tunnel vision for one activity, we have to address many things at once. Some may be more important to us, but we can't stop all other work just for the sake of that one cause. I think it's a false argument. What people usually mean when they argue "what about cause X?" is that they don't care about dogs.

    August 18, 2011 at 14:50 | Report abuse | Reply
  38. Howie

    We've seen this happen enough to suggest there are compounds in the breath of patients with cancer that could provide an early warning about he presence of cancer in the body, but we still do not know exactly what those compounds are,” Lichtenfeld says. “We can’t pick out what the dogs smell.”

    should read

    We've seen this happen enough to suggest there are compounds in the breath of patients with cancer that could provide an early warning about the presence of cancer in the body, but we still do not know exactly what those compounds are,” Lichtenfeld says. “We can’t pick out what the dogs smell.”

    II can't stop editing.... Hire me ;)

    August 18, 2011 at 14:57 | Report abuse | Reply
  39. Andrew

    “We can’t pick out what the dogs smell.”

    Why not run the breath samples through a GC for a statistical analysis? They did the same thing with body odors to determine why mosquitos prefer some people, and some compounds started sticking out, ones related to stress.

    The dogs got 71 out of 100; maybe the key chemical signifiers existed in lower concentrations in the 29 others? If you know what to look for, targeted prevention gets a lot easier.

    August 18, 2011 at 15:01 | Report abuse | Reply
  40. KevinT

    This news doesn't really surprise me. It's probably (read: definitely) an evolutionary advantage to be able to sense when another critter is sick.

    August 18, 2011 at 15:16 | Report abuse | Reply
  41. Donnajc

    I am a bit skeptical of this research.. for starters, they're telling me that letting a dog smell breath samples through a GLASS test tube, that they can detect cancer.. how about making sure there isn't other odors attached to the test tube, like say the holder him or her self among other factors that could potentially contaminate this so called research. There are so many flaws with this research I'm surprised it's actually accepted without question. Furthermore, if you really want a good result when it comes to using a dog's nose, try using a blood hound for starters or at least have one in the mix because they are very well known with their very keen sense of smell over many other breeds. They need to do more with this research, starting with having them actually get access to the "breath sample" without having to try to smell it through glass.. why not let them actually smell the breath of the patients as opposed to the test tube glass.. there are so many other ways to fix the flaws of this research and I do hope someone on that team of researchers realizes some changes need to be done.

    August 18, 2011 at 15:19 | Report abuse | Reply
    • JeramieH

      > There are so many flaws with this research I'm surprised it's actually accepted without question

      You're expecting CNN's coverage to be complete with every detail of how the study was done?

      August 18, 2011 at 17:38 | Report abuse |
  42. DonnaK

    I was diagnosed with cancer 2 years ago. I can tell ahead of time whether my tests are going to come back 'good' or 'bad' by how my Aust. Shepherd is acting. If he is acting normal, I am doing well and my numbers are 'good'. When he is very 'clingy' and protective, never leaving my side, my numbers always come back 'bad'. Since I can't always tell by how I am feeling, I'm assuming he knows something that I don't.

    August 18, 2011 at 15:21 | Report abuse | Reply
  43. HarryDogBalz

    yeaaaah, try to get a cat to do that!

    August 18, 2011 at 15:22 | Report abuse | Reply
  44. HarryDogBalz

    They can cal it a DOGSCAN ...get it? ha ha ha ha!

    August 18, 2011 at 15:23 | Report abuse | Reply
  45. Gina

    Any nurse or doctor who has worked around end stage cancer patients can tell you that cancer DOES have a smell......

    August 18, 2011 at 15:33 | Report abuse | Reply
    • jess

      I agree i have smelled it before and it will never be a smell i can forget

      August 18, 2011 at 16:40 | Report abuse |
  46. Brett

    What does it mean if my dog is VERY attracted to my leg? I mean, he is really into it and gets this red thing on his tummy when I am standing near him. Please help!! I dont want to die!!

    August 18, 2011 at 15:41 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Dreamer96

      You should have never let your uncle Bert near your dog, don't do it again, now you have to take him to the vet. and have him neutered, that is your dog, but you should really think about having your uncle Bert neutered too.

      August 18, 2011 at 16:29 | Report abuse |
  47. NER

    I can attest to the fact that dogs can smell cancer! My son brought his black lab home from college for the weekend, the dog is trained not to jump on me, but he put one paw over the other and hit me in the breast. After two weeks the lump that appeared became so sore I went to the doctor and was diagnosed with Stage II breast cancer. Every doctor we consulted told me "the dog smelled cancer" and most likely saved my life because I had a very fast growing cancer.

    August 18, 2011 at 15:52 | Report abuse | Reply
  48. Nicole

    I don't like how they are using the dogs in the labs but I fully believe what they are saying. Last August my dog was attached to my hip, I tripped over her everywhere I went in the house and remember telling my husband how weird I thought it was. Last December I was diagnosed with Cancer. A few months later I had surgery to remove the tumors and she no longer follows me around.

    August 18, 2011 at 15:56 | Report abuse | Reply
  49. Bill

    Only 71% of dogs can smell cigarette breath?

    August 18, 2011 at 16:07 | Report abuse | Reply
  50. Dreamer96

    Yes I can believe this, Dog have the ability to pick out just tiny amounts of chemicals, maybe 10,000 time better than humans can, and people with cancer probably give off a smell in their sweat, breath, stool, hair, so I can really believe dogs can smell cancer in a person.

    August 18, 2011 at 16:23 | Report abuse | Reply
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Get a behind-the-scenes look at the latest stories from CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen and the CNN Medical Unit producers. They'll share news and views on health and medical trends - info that will help you take better care of yourself and the people you love.