Super dog sniffs out hospital super bugs - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Super dog sniffs out hospital super bugs

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VANCOUVER, Canada - According to the the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, even many of the nation’s leading medical institutions are losing the battle to protect patients from drug-resistant bacteria.

The superbugs cost the health care industry about $5 billion a year, but one hospital in Vancouver has come up with a canine solution, reports CBS News.

With his remarkable sense of smell, Angus the springer spaniel is on a mission to track down the most common kind of hospital superbug called Clostridium difficile or C. diff, which is considered a “hazard level urgent.”

“Their sense of smell is above and beyond anything we can even comprehend,” said dog trainer, Teresa Zurburg.

“C. Difficile is a bacteria. It forms spores so it can persist in our environment for long periods of time,” said Elizabeth Bryce of the Vancouver Coastal Health Infection Prevention and Control.

C. diff is caused by antibiotic use or contact with contaminated surfaces. It’s highly contagious and sometimes deadly, causing half a million infections in the U.S. each year and killing 15,000 people. We can’t see it with the naked eye, but Angus can smell it.

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