Many of the people who love animals tend to show how much, either by kissing them or letting them do it on the mouth and cheeks. However, we should avoid this gesture because it could be more dangerous than we think. After reading this article, you will probably think twice the next time you want to kiss the mouth of your dog.
Neilanjan Nandi, an assistant professor of the Faculty of Medicine of Drexel University, in Philadelphia, has been given special emphasis in an e-mail that the main problem lies in the mouths of animals already harboring a lot of bacteria and viruses.
It is true that its saliva has very beneficial effects as it contains proteins that can help to clean and heal its wounds, but as human, we are not equipped to fight off all those bacteria that come out of their mouths.
“There are some bodies that are only found in dogs and that we are not made to tolerate or to combat,” he writes. In their mouths, bacteria are zoonotic, meaning that they can transmit to humans, and therefore cause diseases. Among these bacteria are E. Coli, Salmonella and Campylobacter, which cause severe gastrointestinal illness in humans.
When the saliva of the dog touches the human skin of a healthy person without any type of injury, it is very difficult to cause problems since there would be just absorption through the skin.
However, there’s an easier absorption through the mucous membranes of the nose, mouth, and eyes of a person. Although it is difficult for bacteria to be transmitted, it is best to prevent the dogs from licking those parts of the face to prevent any type of disease.
You should also be aware that it is not just the saliva. The dogs put their snout in many unpleasant places and smell the excrement of other dogs, so they end up full of bacteria, germs, and viruses of all kinds, and may transmit infections such as intestinal worms or small worms.
But you should not worry about it too much. You can continue showing your pets the love you feel for them by stroking them all you want. Remember: do not kiss or let them lick the areas with mucous membranes.