You might think it’s cute. That big, wet and slobbery tongue reaching out from your canine’s jaw and affectionately lapping at your face, your tools and your fingers.
The question you should ask yourself is are dog mouths really cleaner than human mouths?
All you have to do is look, watch, smell and you’ll realize that is not true.
Dogs spend half their life with their noses in dirty corners or hovering over dog droppings so their muzzles are full of bacteria, viruses and germs of all sorts.
Those viruses and germs can cause conditions that can be damaging to human health, as one U.K. woman learned the hard way.
She got an infection from her Italian greyhound’s saliva. She didn’t even realize anything was wrong until she was on the phone with a relative and began to notice her speech slurring.
By the time the ambulance arrived, she was slumped in her chair, her health degrading rapidly. She recovered with two weeks of intensive care and plenty of antibiotics.
Blood tests showed the infection was due to bacteria, which is generally found in the mouths of dogs and cats.
She’s not alone – there have been 13 similar cases throughout the UK.
That’s not the only disease dogs can pass onto you through dog kisses.
There are also ringworm infections.
A ringworm infection is one of the easiest diseases for your dog to pass onto you from smooching. If the ringworm bacteria is around in their mouth and you engage in kissing, bam. Ringworm for you too.
MRSA (Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus)
MRSA infection in humans, which produce lesions like the ugly one above, can be caused by as little as one lick from your dog.
Dogs can carry around this bacteria with very little effect on their own health but when an owner comes into contact with it… Yeah, it’s a bad time.
This one’s really bad.
This man was told by his doctor that his Capnocytophaga Canimorsus infection was caused by a dog licking his open wound.
This does not just end on dogs, but other pets as well.