What happens if my dog ​​licks my face?


For us, a kiss is nothing more than a beautiful way to show love or affection, it is hard for us to think that there could be something wrong with a kiss. Those of us who have pets know that he is a member of our family and deserves less love than others.. Is it really bad to kiss dogs? On the other hand, it is true that kissing our pets can spread diseases and infections.

Is it bad to kiss the dogs?

However beautiful the love we feel for our furry friends, the harsh reality is that too close contact with them can lead to the transmission of viruses and bacteria that can lead to diseases.

According to a scientific study led by the Dr. Yoji Yamkazi, from Osaka University, many people consider their pet to be another member of their family, and for this reason they give kisses as a sign of affection, just as they do with the rest of their relatives. This study concluded that These people are more likely to get sick, due to the viruses that their pets transmit to them.

To carry out this study, a sample of 66 pets and their owners was gathered, as well as veterinarians and animal shelter volunteers. Most of the people who admitted to kissing their pets often had bacteria causing periodontitis in their mouths, a disease that damages their teeth and the ligaments that hold them, encouraging the fall of dental pieces. On the other hand, the presence of human oral bacteria was also observed in the mouths of the dogs. The bacteria of dogs and humans are different, but they can be transmitted to each other.

What happens when I kiss my dog

If you usually sleep with your pet or kiss your face or mouth, think you may have ticksFor example, they cause a disease called lyme and that can affect humans.

But ... what does a tick have to do with my dog's mouth? You may ask. It's true, lTicks are not in the mouth, but they can be in other parts of your body. When a dog feels itchy from ticks, it lick the affected area to calm the discomfortThey even bite trying to pluck the parasite from their skin.

In addition, sIf the tick spends too much time in your body, it can transmit a disease by sucking your blood, disease that then your dog could spread to you through saliva.

Dogs can also convey the famous and feared rage. Yes, anger can affect people and is passed through saliva. It is a serious disease that in the case of dogs can cause high fever, aggressive behavior and even death.

(Photo via: pinterest)

Beware of parvovirus!

This disease, also known by its acronym PVC 2 It is very contagious and can be transmitted in two ways: feces and saliva. Parvovirus is very resistant, It can survive in extreme weather conditions. It affects puppies under 4 months more frequently if they are not vaccinated.

What if, They can spread them to us through kisses. The races most vulnerable to PVC 2, susceptible even to die from this virus, are the rottweiler and the doberman. If you have a pet, always make sure you get the parvovirus vaccine, to prevent it from contracting and transmitting it to us.

For these reasons, We recommend that you do not kiss your dog, even if it seems very healthy or clean. You can never know for sure what he has been in contact with or what viruses and bacteria are in his mouth. Besides, really, for them kisses mean nothing, dogs understand much better other forms of affection that, fortunately, are harmless to us. Show your dog how much you love him by caressing him, playing, giving him prizes, and above all, taking care of him and making him happy!

What if I let him eat my food? Experts in microbiology and veterinary clarify the problems that these affectionate gestures can bring to our health and that of our pet

Many love their dogs Almost as if they were children. Even more than other people. To the point of speaking to them as if they were babies or letting them sleep in their beds. Some are even willing to receive kisses in the form of licks on the face or share food with them.

Precisely a scene of this type has been viralized on social networks: a woman shares her ice cream with a dachshund and then continues eating it. Is it a healthy practice or not? The debate is served on the Internet. Some say that share his food and let his canine companions lick him because it is a gesture of love. Others, on the other hand, consider that it should not be healthy for a dog, which smells the urine and excrement of other animals - among other junk found in the street - to share our food or kiss us on the face. But who is right? This is what the experts think.

Avoid licks in the mouth, eyes, nose and wounds

Despite having studies, as one published in the prestigious magazine Nature, who say that having a pet from childhood could help us reduce the risk of allergies or diseases such as asthma, experts advise against the contact of the animal's mouth with our face and our food. "You have to be careful with the licks," says Manuel Sánchez Angulo, Professor of Microbiology at the Miguel Hernández University of Elche and a member of the Spanish Society of Microbiology (SEM) because "The dog's snout takes everything out there".

The professor of microbiology at the University of Navarra and author of Microbiota: the microbes of your body, Ignacio López-Goñi, remember that, despite being a gesture of affection, the animal is used to lick feces and other dogs, and let us suck our faces or food "can transmit pathogens such as bacteria, viruses, fungi and parasites that can cause diseases ". In fact, explains Federico Vilaplana Valverde, clinical veterinarian, president of the Official College of Veterinarians of Cádiz and member of the General Council of Veterinary Colleges," through a lick can transmit bacterial infections such as E. Coli, Camplylobacter or Salmonella"

This does not mean that it is bad for adults or children to play with dogs, simply, López-Goñi continues, you have to maintain hygiene standards: "That licks never touch the mouth, eyes, nose or a wound"However, he adds," if both the owner and the dog are healthy, there is usually nothing to fear. "

It is important to correct the gesture in time

This gesture, which helps dogs recognize our mood, clarifies Vilaplana Valverde, comes from their ancestors: "It represents a sign of submission and love, since the dog is a social animal that is part of a clan (in this case, the family environment) and needs to show the other members of the group to which it belongs frequently. "But they are also able to show these feelings to through his body language and sounds and "it is the owner's responsibility to correct this instinct because it poses a health risk."

The veterinarian also remembers that it is essential for the health of the family unit to keep up to date with the vaccines of animals - rabies, leptospirosis with their different serotypes, parvovirosis, distemper or hepatitis. In addition to maintaining your hygiene, perform periodic deworming, keep it away from the feces of other animals, and wash your hands with soap and water regularly after playing with it.

It is also not healthy for the animal

Feeding the animal with our food is not good for him, says the veterinarian: "Your digestive system is different from ours and we can cause serious health problems"." The feed is the most appropriate to control the calories you eat, depending on your age, race or exercise and thus avoid problems such as obesity, "he adds and recommends that before introducing any type of change in food of your dog, consult a specialist.

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How do dogs kiss?

The way dogs have to show us their affection and affection is by licking our face or hands, so we can compare your licks with our kisses or caresses. Thanks to all the time that these pets have been accompanying us and evolving at our side for centuries and centuries, dogs are able to detect our mood and try to improve it with their signs of love, support and understanding, which are nothing more or nothing less than sticking licks with his tongue.

According to a study by anthropologist Kim Kelly of the University of Arizona, it has been scientifically proven that people who live with dogs are happier that the rest of the population, and their affective body language has a lot to do with this.

In addition to using their tongue to make us feel good, dogs also lick their pack leaders when they are offended or to show them submission (whether they are humans or fellow dogs) or their puppies to clean and keep them warm, and that is what dogs have thousands of nerve endings and chemical receptors on the tongue and in their snouts, which make them very sensitive to any external contact.

What increases the risk of tooth decay in children?

Yes it is. Says the Spanish Society of Pediatric Dentistry, that we should not kiss our children on the lips because we have a higher risk of caries. In [this document] (some psychology professionals) with information and recommendations on caries say the following:

The microbes that cause tooth decay are acquired. The baby is born with a sterile mouth and is gradually invaded by germs. The transmission of these microbes comes, in the vast majority of cases, through parents, in the same way that a simple flu can be transmitted.

There are different ways of transmitting the microbes to the child's mouth, sometimes the parents use the mouth as a cleaning mechanism for a pacifier, the nipple of a bottle or a spoon and even cut the food with their own mouth. Other times it is the custom of kiss the children in the mouth.

It does not have to do that adults have cavities or not, simply the exchange of saliva can transfer these germs to the child's mouth. Therefore, the main recommendation is to clean the pacifiers well with water, never with the mouth and do without kisses on the mouth, however endearing they may seem.

Improve your bacterial flora

Apart from the thousands of nerve endings it contains, the dogs mouth is also a great source of bacteria and microbes. So is it bad to kiss my dog ​​or let him lick your mouth? The answer is no, as long as it is done in moderation and care.

While it is true that our dog friends usually smell and lick everything they catch on the street or at home, and as a consequence the microorganisms or bacteria they have can spread them to us when we kiss them and produce an infection or disease, fueling the topic that the saliva of dogs is bad, the study mentioned above has revealed that the microbes present in their stomachs have a probiotic effect on our body. This means that thanks to the coevolution that have developed at our side, the microorganisms that can enter our body improve our microbiota (set of microorganisms that normally live in our body) and promote the growth of good bacteria thus strengthening our immune system of defenses.

Obviously, it is not advisable to be constantly kissing them and letting the dog's saliva come into contact with us with continuous licking, but now we know that if this happens, nothing happens and even our microbial flora will improve. In addition, humans are infected with more bacterial, viral and parasitic diseases by not washing our hands more than a dog can lick us to show us that he loves us.

And why do you have to think twice before kissing them?

The Dr. Charlotte Reznick She is a psychopedagogue and associate clinical professor of psychology at the University of UCLA. As he comments for a few years, the issue of kissing children is quite controversial because of "you start when they are young but when do you stop doing it?". Because kissing a small child is not the same as a child of, for example, 10 years. To avoid this dilemma, recommends that parents stop kissing their children on the lips anymore, are as old as they are.

As we read in The Stir, a website where she often participates as an advisor, if we take the example of a 6-year-old girl kissed by her father, we have a completely innocent action on both sides, but that it can be dangerous if then the girl goes to class and tries to kiss her classmates on the lips. It will also do so innocently, but in the eyes of third parties, already at that age, it could begin to be considered sexual harassment:

When a child reaches 4, 5 or 6 years old and their sexual awareness begins to exist (and in some children that happens before, like when we realize that they start masturbating at 2 or 3 years old, when they have just discovered their intimate parts and feel good) the kiss on the lips can be stimulating for them.

Apparently, Reznick has had to intervene in some cases happened in US schools, because there they have very much in mind the issue of sexual harassment, even in school, as a case in which a boy kissed another girl in class . As he explained to Babyology:

The boy entered the class and kissed a girl on the lips. School officials were not sure if their behavior was impulsive or if it was more a matter of sexual harassment. They were close to expel him but in the end they did not do it in exchange for receiving counseling sessions.

We do not know the age of that boy, but she is talking about children of all ages (including preschool) and it is obviously not the same as a 4-year-old boy kissing a girl of the same age, as a child of 10 years with a classmate, without her permission. In any case, it ensures that there is no need to kiss them on the lips, as parents, because It is a sensitive area that is easily stimulated with contact.

He asserts that he does not mean by this that he is wrong, or that until now they have done something very negative, but simply to explain the reality so that each father then works as he sees fit.

Recommendations to kiss your dog

But are all microorganisms that dogs have in their mouths good? The truth is that no, and some of them can provoke us oral or parasitic diseases. That is why it is convenient to take a series of measures whenever possible to continue enjoying the affection of our pets and avoid unnecessary risks:

  • It is recommended to have the daily vaccination schedule of the dog
  • Deworming the dog often and / or putting on a flea collar
  • Make it a habit to brush your teeth a few times a week.
  • Brush and bathe the dog when necessary, according to their breed and relevant care.
  • Avoid licking directly in the mouth

Therefore, now you know that It's not bad to kiss your dog, that there is no problem in letting your dog lick your mouth, and that the saliva of dogs contains good and bad bacteria just like ours and that of all living beings.

If you want to read more articles similar to Is it bad to kiss my dog?, we recommend that you enter our Curiosities section of the animal world.

Well, I've kissed them on the lips (and I would do it again)

Now it comes when you, as fathers and mothers, give your opinion about what you just read. Charlotte Reznick is a psychology professor, author of books for parents and, as you can see, she advises in educational centers, as a psychopedagogue, and it gives me the feeling, when reading her words, that I am "listening" to the baker.

With all due respect for the bakers, I hallucinate when I see that he explains, so calmly and probably without being unchanged, that a child at 4-6 years has developed his sexuality and could be sexually harassing a partner or that a 2-3 year old child years that touches its parts, it does because it already has sexual conscience. As I explained here in Babies and more 7 years ago, the fact that a child of that age touches the genitals is a natural act of exploration and knowledge of your own body and, as such, we should not censor it. They touch, like and do and repeat.

Similarly, kissing on the lips has no sexual connotation for children, or mockery or harassment. If they do it is because they want to repeat a pattern or because they care for another person. In fact, it is usual to see children of 3 or 4 years kissing other children of 3 or 4 years and I doubt that no one says that they are gay. That nothing would happen if they were, but since they have not yet developed their sexuality, it is absurd to start saying that they are one thing or the other.

So I confess: I have kissed my children in the mouth. I've done it many times, but many, from the love and affection I have for them, and I love it when they kiss me (in fact, my profile picture on the WhatsApp is one in which Guim kisses me on the mouth ). Now we don't do it anymore. They are 9, 6 and 3 years old and I don't kiss them on the mouth. Why? I don't know, nor have they asked me to stop doing it, nor do I avoid it in a conscious and premeditated way. It's just that Now I get to kiss them on the cheek.

But come on, if I still kissed them on the mouth I would have no problem doing it in public, or saying it. In fact, contrary to what this psychologist suggests, and without being a holder of your curriculum, I recommend the opposite: kiss your children on the lips as much as you want, and until the age you want. Children are intelligent enough to realize that adults only kiss the people we love on the mouth, and that is why when they grow up they will not kiss unknown people on the lips, or all their friends, or dogs from the park, or the psychologists who write books. And if they do something like that, or try, just explain what does a kiss on the mouth mean in the world of the elderly to do so when they deem appropriate.

Kiss them a lot, as much as you can, unless you want to avoid increasing the risk of tooth decay. Then it is better not to do it, that is true.

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