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Kissing is a way of showing affection between humans. Sometimes dogs also show affection by kissing their beloved humans. Only their form of kissing is licking. If you have a highly affectionate dog, you might have wondered from time to time about whether these so-called kisses are safe. Well, the fact is, they are not.Problems Regarding Dog Kisses
The reason behind the kisses being unsafe is that the mouth of your dog contains a large number of organisms like bacteria, parasites, yeasts, and viruses, which humans aren’t immune to. Some of them can even transfer from your dog’s mouth to you, causing illnesses like salmonella, campylobacter, and E.coli.Dogs are curious creatures. Remember that they use their mouths to explore the world around them. When they are on a scent, their noses are to the ground. That’s why it’s also likely that the bacteria is not just limited to his mouth, but also his muzzle and face.The mucous membranes of your nose, eyes, and mouth can absorb your dog’s saliva while he’s licking your face. It can then easily enter into your body. Although your immune system might be strong enough to fight a few of these organisms off, there are exceptions. You are at a higher risk of illness if you have a weakened immune system due to prior medical conditions, or age.Concerns For Kids
Children have immature immune systems as they are still under development. Make sure you keep your dogs or puppies from licking your kid’s face. Their underdeveloped immune systems aren’t strong enough to fight off the microbes that are transferred through these kisses.Some puppies harbor intestinal parasites. These parasites lay eggs in the puppy’s intestines. These eggs are then eliminated through his stool. Your puppy might have remnants of the stool on his paws and when he licks his paws, it’s transferred to his mouth. When your puppy kisses your child afterward, these parasites can just as easily infect her. Intestinal parasites are very serious in children. Some parasites like roundworms can even lead to blindness!Set Some Ground Rules
If you’re not ready to depart with your dog’s kisses just yet, set a few rules to be safer.
- Keep all your dog’s de-worming, vaccinations, and parasite prevention updated.
- Avoid the kisses altogether if your immune system is weak or has been compromised.
- Wash your hands and face after being with your dog.
- Pay ample attention to your dog’s dental health by brushing his teeth every day and taking him to regular professional dental cleanings as per your veterinarian’s recommendation.
- Watch children closely and try to keep your dog from kissing them all together if possible.
- Don’t get licked by a dog you don’t know. Even when that dog is a pet of a friend.