The French-language newspaper Le Monde reported on Thursday that the dogs used in the Haitian outbreak were used by the French government as “a tool to control the epidemic and prevent people from spreading it”.
The report, which was published at the end of January, quoted a French government source as saying that the dog nails had been manufactured by the State Emergency Service, the French equivalent of the police.
According to Le Mond, the dogs were purchased by the Haitian government for $200 each, and that they had been used by officials in the southern part of the country to prevent people who have contracted the virus from travelling abroad.
The French government has previously warned that dogs are not only used to control human disease, but are also used to prevent animal diseases like dengue and malaria from spreading.
France has the world’s second highest death toll from the Ebola outbreak after the United States.