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Your Dog’s Sense of Smell

Sunday, October 6, 2013
posted by Jim Murphy

DOG SNIFFINGA dog relies on his sense of smell to interpret his world. It’s the same way that people depend on their sight. Although this contrasting world view may be hard to imagine, know that your dog interprets as much information as you do. However,he does much of this by smelling an object or animal, not by staring at it. We have plates inside our noses called turbinates.  Air passes over the turbinates. Turbinates are a spongy membrane which contain most of the scent detecting cells as well as the nerves which transport the information to the brain. In humans, the size of these detectors are about one square inch or about the size of a postage stamp.  If you could unfold this area in a dog, it would be about 60 square inches. It’s been estimated that dogs can identify smells somewhere between 1,000 to 10,000 times better than nasally challenged humans can.  So never underestimate your dogs ability to sniff things out. If an odor smells very strong to you, imagine how strong it is to your dog!

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