Cadaver dogs and really old cases. Total B.S. or real?

I’m having a really hard time accepting that there is any lingering smell after 23 years. I’d love to see air samples tested in a lab. Think of all the snow that piled up several feet thick and melted year after year in that spot. I lived in Massachusetts for eight years and know how bad their winters are.

I have no problems believing cadaver dogs can smell a recent body. Maybe even up to a year.

Am I missing something? Are dogs really that good that they can smell death after 20 plus years?

Many of the products of decomposition are persistent and long lived. In particular, adipocere (a waxy fat) can take many years to break down. It probably traps other volatile decomposition products, as well, releasing them slowly.

In addition, insoluble minerals from the body (including phosphorus) can remain in the soil, providing chemical markers and changing soil chemistry. This combination can change the vegetation on the grave from the area norm (although soil disturbance during grave digging can do this, too). It can be pretty significant.

There is plenty of ongoing research into this topic, and there are developments of instrumentation to provide more reliable detectors then dogs (which are enthusiastic and pretty good, but are expensive to train and maintain).

There are some notes here on dogs working a site over 150 years old. They did not find the burial site (which was post-decomposition), but seemed to detect the primary above ground decomposition sites. By this standard, 23 years is pretty recent.



Bones must have a distinctive smell. After all, dogs bury bones all the time.

I’m just glad that my nose isn’t that sensitive.

Apparently it took them 23 years to train these dogs, so I’d expect a lot out of them. :wink:

Whenever I see or hear ‘cadaver dogs’, I can’t help singing it to Mah Nà Mah Nà.

Also, band name!

I… never would have thought of that, but now, I always will.

♪♫ Doot Doooo Do Do Do ♪♫
♪♫ Doot Do Do Do ♪♫
♪♫ Doot Doooo Do Do Do,
Do Do Do, Do Do Do,
Do Do-Do-Do-Do
Doot-Doot Dooo Do ♪♫

DAMN YOU. (Doot doo do do do)

What **si_blakely **said, and Damn you Johnny L.A. and Heart of Dorkness! Damn you to hell!

(Doot doo do do do!)

I don’t get it.

Maybe this will help! :smiley:

::Shakes fist at Johnny L.A. and Heart of Dorkness!:: :wink:

Here is a version from a band I used to tour with, The Asylum Street Spankers, You Tube sound only

Awesome band, this was done when Stanley could tour with us

BTW I do sound and Tour Manage


Ah, I see. Now I have “Put Down the Duckie” in my head.

::Shakes fist at Johnny L.A. and Heart of Dorkness!::