Quiz: How do bomb-sniffing dogs work?

By: Staff
Image: refer to hsw

About This Quiz

Your dog can roll over? Well, ours can sniff out a kilo of C-4. Take the bomb-sniffing dog quiz, and see if your score gets you a treat or the rolled-up newspaper.

A dog's nose has 20 to 40 times more of these than a human's does:

We're not sure that anyone has counted the nose hairs, but dogs most certainly have more odor receptors than humans.

What does a trained dog do when it smells a bomb?

The dog sits, a subtle signal to its handler that a bomb may be nearby.

Why does the military train bomb dogs to run back to their handlers when they smell a bomb?

If the dog runs away from the bomb and toward troops, it's less likely to be caught in an explosion.

Which animal is especially useful for sniffing out land mines?

Rats are light-footed, so unlike dogs, they're unlikely to trigger the mine with their weight.

Which breed of dog is often used for bomb-sniffing?

German shepherds are used for their sense of smell and their good behavior.

Could a bomb-sniffing dog find a logic bomb?

That was a trick question. A logic bomb is a type of malicious computer program that "goes off" within a regular computer program.

Dogs help humans by sniffing out more than just bombs. In medicine, researchers have explored dogs' ability to sniff out:

Studies have explored dogs' ability to sniff out substances found in urine, exhalations or the tumor itself when a human has different types of cancer.

You couldn't hide gunpowder from a well-trained canine. The Chinese discovered gunpowder, a common ingredient in explosives, accidentally while trying to make:

Chinese alchemists were trying to make an immortality elixir.

No dog would find the first manufacturing plant for nitroglycerin, an ingredient in early forms of dynamite. Why not?

Immanuel and Alfred Nobel built the first nitroglycerin factory in 1862, but it exploded in 1864.

A dog would NOT smell which of the following in a bomb?

RDX and ANFO are common exploding agents in bombs. Those are cyclotrimethylenetrinitramine and ammonium nitrate-fuel oil mixtures for you chemistry junkies. Barium sulfate isn't used in bombs; it's used in barium enemas.

When bomb-dogs in the Air Force sit next to helicopters, what do they wear to protect their eyes from stirred-up sand or dust?

The dogs wear Doggles, protective eyewear specially made for canines.

Some bomb-sniffing dogs are trained to smell wiring found in bombs. What wireless device can be used to set off a bomb remotely?

Cell phones can be used to detonate bombs.

What is a blasting cap?

These can be part of bombs, in addition to the actual material that explodes.

A dirty bomb contains:

A dirty bomb contains radioactive material and spreads the material when it explodes.

No bomb-sniffing dog captured the Unabomber. So, which mammal led the FBI to the infamous criminal?

David Kaczynski, Theodore Kaczynski's brother, told the FBI that he had suspicions his brother was the Unabomber.

Most bomb-sniffing dogs we know aren't on the lookout for yarn bombs. What's yarn bombing?

This odd form of graffiti involves knitting a cocoon around objects in public spaces, from park benches to statues.

Based on the name, a hungry bomb-sniffing dog might like to detect a bread-crust bomb. What is one?

While stale bread can hit pretty hard, a bread-crust bomb is a piece of lava flung out of volcano that, when it hits the ground, has a hard, cracked surface and soft interior -- basically looking like bread. Not so tasty after all.

Which Iraqi city did NOT undergo car bombings during the Iraq War?

Both cities underwent numerous car bombings. Plenty of bomb-sniffing dogs from the U.S. military have served in Iraq.

Which was NOT found in the homemade car bomb that Faisal Shahzad planted in Times Square in 2010?

The bomb, which luckily did not explode, was made of gasoline, propane, firecrackers and alarm clocks.

PETN has been used in terrorist plots to destroy planes and assassinate officials. PETN stands for:

U.F. Abdulmutallab sewed pentaerythritol tetranitrate into his underwear in a 2009 plot to bomb a plane; a bomber planted the explosive in an orifice in a 2009 attack on Saudi Arabia's intelligence chief; and Richard C. Reid's shoe bomb, in 2001, contained PETN.

Despite its powerful explosion, PETN has failed in terrorist plots because:

PETN needs special conditions to detonate. It will not explode if set on fire.

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