Add peanuts and other allergens that can be deadly to sufferers to the list of things dogs are being trained to detect.
A story on WSJ.com, says the same training used to teach dogs to find explosives can be used for allergens. Dogs can detect the allergen or even its residue.
It's an unusual solution to a growing problem, according to The Wall Street Journal. The number of U.S. children with food allergies jumped about 60 percent in the last 15 years. Close to 6 percent of the population suffers from food allergies, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The dogs are especially useful for people who risk going into anaphylaxis, a potentially life-threatening allergic reaction, by touching or coming into contact with an allergen. For these people, everyday activities like going to the store or school are risky and anxiety-provoking.
And the dogs' training must be maintained. "Brady Lerille, who got a dog when he started attending the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, has friends help him hide the allergen or uses sealed bags and gloves when he goes it alone," the Journal says.
Continue reading the full story on The Wall Street Journal.