Do Not Kiss Your Dog

Emotion motionPet owners love to ask their pooch for a smooch, it’s just a cute way of cuddling up to the animal. But recent research has shown that you might be causing yourself more harm than good. If you kiss your dog you are swapping bacteria.

Recently, Japanese researchers documented the dental plaque off of 66 dogs. They then compared it to 81 people from Japan that visited a local animal center in 2011. The researchers were looking for disease causing agents and they found 11 of them present. They plaque was considered a disease.

These disease causing oral bacteria were prevalent in most of the dog plaque examined. They also found 71.2 percent in dog samples. The bacterial species was less common in the human subject but it was still there. Researchers found 16 percent of Porphyromnas gulae in the human mouth among others.

This particular bacteria was found to be linked to owners and dogs that were tested. The results have proven that there are linked diseases between people who let their animals lick them on the face and others. Most of the bacteria and viruses in the human mouth are the same as dog mouth.

In recent case studies where a dog owner licked honey from a dropper that she used to feed her dog bacteria was linked. In fact, this particular owner was hospitalized for a respiratory illness. This was linked with cats mostly, but still shows that the animals mouth can transmit diseases to a human. These infections just happen during normal pet and human affection.

There has even been evidence that gum disease can be linked to our pets. Many dogs have an inflammation of their gum tissue. When they lick you there is a large chance that the bacteria will be transferred to you. The bacteria sharing can cause serious infections. 5% of dogs and cats have some sort of cavity or tooth decay. Diseases can seriously be transferred from humans and dogs.

Next time that you look at your dog and feel the need to cuddle, consider keeping you mouth away. It’s not that unusual for animals to carry diseases to humans.

Diseases we can get from animals

Cat Scratch Disease: A bacterial infection that cats spread. In some cases you will get a swollen lymph node and fever. 40% of cats carry this disease and rarely show signs of being infected.

Psittacosis: This comes form breathing the dust of bird droppings. It is spread by pigeons, turkeys and other birds.

Brucellosis: This disease hampers humans and dogs. It is transmitted by infected cow milk. The disease is flu like.

Tuberculosis: Humans can get this from deer, cattle and other animals.

These diseases are all spread via animals. Animals can sometimes show little to no symptoms so the best policy is to be aware of this disease and try not to exchange saliva. You can still pet and hug your animal, just don’t kiss them. The best practice is safety.

Dan Matthews DDS
Dan Matthews Dan Matthews DDS The Park at Eanes Creek,
4407 Bee Cave Road
Building 2, Suite 221
Austin, Texas, 78746
(512) 452-2273
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