Understanding a Dog’s Sense of Smell

Dog Sense of Smell

Possessing over 300 million receptors in their noses, when it comes to the power of the nose, dogs definitely win out over humans. For this reason, canines are used to carry out crucial, life-saving missions. Military dogs are able to locate the presence of bombs or weapons, where service dogs have the ability to assist their owners with disabilities, such as warning an epileptic patient if they are about to have a seizure. Let’s take a look at several more facts about what makes a dog’s nose so special.

Dogs Think That Humans Are Smelly

No matter if you take 3 showers in a row, and spray yourself with deodorant and perfume, your dog thinks you are splendidly smelly. Every human being has their own unique scent. To your dog, he or she recognizes you by your smell. Perhaps this is why many dogs make a point of greeting you by stuffing their nose directly into your groin, where they can get a great big whiff of your personal pheromones.

Dogs Can Smell Human Conditions

Sure, your dog can smell your tasty dinner cooking on the stove from far away, however research suggests that your dog’s nose can delve much deeper than that.

Your dog’s nose has the ability to smell your fear and even your sadness. This is because their noses are able to detect the scent of adrenaline coming out of your pores. When you are afraid, your heart races and your blood flow increase, sending specific chemicals to the skin’s surface, which a dog is able to detect right away.

Some dogs have even been able to detect cancer in their owners before they even knew they had it. This is because to the dog, cancer gives off a very specific odor in a human’s breath or excretions.

Dogs Sniff Each Other to Gather Information

That’s right. When your dog sniffs another dog’s butt, he is going on a fact-finding mission. Their goal is to find out important information about their new pal. With just a little sniffing around, your dog is able to find out how old the dog is, what they ate for lunch, and lots of info in between. Along those same lines, dogs mark their territory in order to communicate with other dogs. When your dog sniffs at a tree where another dog has marked, he is learning about the other dogs around town.

Your Dog’s Breed Plays a Factor in His Nose’s Power

As it turns out, not all doggies are equal in the number of olfactory receptors in their noses. For example, German Shepherds have about 225 million receptors, whereas Dachshunds only have about 125 million. However, the number of scent receptors isn’t always relative to the size of the dog. Bloodhounds have more than German Shepherds do, with around 300 million scent receptors. Humans are at the bottom of the ladder with only 5 million.

A Dog’s Nose is a Complex Structure

The structure of a dog’s nose is more complex than humans. For example, dogs have separate holes for breathing in and out. Most notably, dogs are able to pick up on many different smells at the same time, even if the smells are coming from different directions.

Detection dogs have the ability to discern individual scents, even when the scents have been combined in an effort to mask their contents. For example, when a criminal tries to mask the odor of drugs by placing them in coffee, pepper, or petroleum jelly, it is unlikely that the drugs will get past the nose of a skilled detection dog. Dogs sniff about 5-6 times per second, and detection dogs are likely to sniff out what is desperately trying to be hidden.

Understanding a Dog’s Sense of Smell

Possessing over 300 million receptors in their noses, when it comes to the power of the nose, dogs definitely win out over humans. For this reason, canines are used to carry out crucial, life-saving missions. Military dogs are able to locate the presence of bombs or weapons, where service dogs have the ability to assist their owners with disabilities, such as warning an epileptic patient if they are about to have a seizure. Let’s take a look at several more facts about what makes a dog’s nose so special.

Dogs Think That Humans Are Smelly

No matter if you take 3 showers in a row, and spray yourself with deodorant and perfume, your dog thinks you are splendidly smelly. Every human being has their own unique scent. To your dog, he or she recognizes you by your smell. Perhaps this is why many dogs make a point of greeting you by stuffing their nose directly into your groin, where they can get a great big whiff of your personal pheromones.

Dogs Can Smell Human Conditions

Sure, your dog can smell your tasty dinner cooking on the stove from far away, however research suggests that your dog’s nose can delve much deeper than that.

Your dog’s nose has the ability to smell your fear and even your sadness. This is because their noses are able to detect the scent of adrenaline coming out of your pores. When you are afraid, your heart races and your blood flow increase, sending specific chemicals to the skin’s surface, which a dog is able to detect right away.

Some dogs have even been able to detect cancer in their owners before they even knew they had it. This is because to the dog, cancer gives off a very specific odor in a human’s breath or excretions.

Dogs Sniff Each Other to Gather Information

That’s right. When your dog sniffs another dog’s butt, he is going on a fact-finding mission. Their goal is to find out important information about their new pal. With just a little sniffing around, your dog is able to find out how old the dog is, what they ate for lunch, and lots of info in between. Along those same lines, dogs mark their territory in order to communicate with other dogs. When your dog sniffs at a tree where another dog has marked, he is learning about the other dogs around town.

Your Dog’s Breed Plays a Factor in His Nose’s Power

As it turns out, not all doggies are equal in the number of olfactory receptors in their noses. For example, German Shepherds have about 225 million receptors, whereas Dachshunds only have about 125 million. However, the number of scent receptors isn’t always relative to the size of the dog. Bloodhounds have more than German Shepherds do, with around 300 million scent receptors. Humans are at the bottom of the ladder with only 5 million.

A Dog’s Nose is a Complex Structure

The structure of a dog’s nose is more complex than humans. For example, dogs have separate holes for breathing in and out. Most notably, dogs are able to pick up on many different smells at the same time, even if the smells are coming from different directions.

Detection dogs have the ability to discern individual scents, even when the scents have been combined in an effort to mask their contents. For example, when a criminal tries to mask the odor of drugs by placing them in coffee, pepper, or petroleum jelly, it is unlikely that the drugs will get past the nose of a skilled detection dog. Dogs sniff about 5-6 times per second, and detection dogs are likely to sniff out what is desperately trying to be hidden.