People believe that dogs kiss us as a sign of affection they learned from their mom as a puppy. Others believe, a dog kisses because she is simply letting you know that she's glad to see you or maybe because she is hungry and asking for food. This has been a debate for many years. Some pet lovers believe that dogs kissing or lickin their face is fine and actually love the attention. On the other side of the debate, some pet lovers believe that there is an "ick" factor in letting your dog kiss you and even believe you can get sick from a dogs kiss.
For many dog years, dog lovers have been kissing their dogs and alowing their dog to kiss or lick them to show the ultimate form of affection. Ever hear the saying “A dogs mouth is nine times cleaner than a human” or “It’s okay to let the dog lick your wound”. Have you ever watched a dog give a baby a big kiss on the lips and think how cute.
Well a study from the journal Archives of Oral Biology is now cautioning us from getting to affectionate. The study finds that people and pets exchange harmful mouth bacteria when they kiss.
Also, as reported in The New York Times, letting your dog lick your face risks disease transmission, including diseases humans can't handle. "There are some organisms unique to dogs that we were simply not meant to tolerate or combat," Dr. Neilanjan Nandi, an assistant professor of medicine at Drexel University College of Medicine.
Japanese Researchers examined dental plaque from 66 dogs. They also examined dental plaque in 81 dog owners. The research found human bacteria in the mouths of dogs and dog bacteria in the mouths of humans. The study demonstrates that germs can spread easily between a human and a dog by kissing. Some of the bacteria that is spread can lead to periodontitis, a severe form of gum disease.
Now for us dog loving kissing parents, Dr. Leni K. Kaplan, a lecturer of community practice service at Cornell University’s College of Veterinary Medicine, says Yes, your dog can lick your face. Just stay away from the eyes, nose, mouth and any cuts. "When dog saliva touches intact human skin, especially in a healthy person, it is extremely unlikely to cause any problems, as there will be very little absorption through the skin."
Clark Fobian, DVM, president of the American Veterinary Medical Association says "kissing your furry baby is OK, if it doesn’t gross you out. Just have a healthy awareness of what could be in your dog’s mouth.
Human and dog mouths have “a large number and a wide variety of bacteria,” Fobian says. Fortunately, most of it doesn’t make us sick, but some can.
So, do you kiss your dog? Do you know why your dog kisses you?