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Do You Smooch Your Pooch?

Do You Smooch Your Pooch?

Posted on May 13th, 2024

Minneapolis dentist, Dr. Maggie Craven Thompson at Skyway Dental Clinic, discusses bad bacteria that can be passed on by dog kisses. Don’t smooch your pooch!We’ve all heard the expression that a dog is a (hu)man’s best friend and dog lovers wouldn’t disagree. There’s also a common misconception that “a dog’s mouth is cleaner than a human’s mouth”. As it turns out, that’s not true at all, and there are many reasons you should never let your dog kiss you on the lips or even the face.

Where Could a Dog’s Nose Have Been?

  • Garbage can
  • Toilet
  • “Greeting” another dog’s nether regions
  • Litter box

What a dog sniffs, he eats, and what he eats, he licks—so that rules out letting your dog give you kisses. Unfortunately, kissing a dog’s nose or the top of his head isn’t sanitary, either. If a dog has an ear or mouth infection, germs can end up all over his body or end up on his coat when he slobbers. 

Can You & Your Dog Make Each Other Sick?

Human and dog mouths both have copious amounts and varieties of bacteria. Fortunately, most of those bacteria don’t make us sick, but some can, and no amount of oral hygiene can fight them off. The diseases, pathogens, and parasites dogs can pass to humans include:

  • Tooth decay
  • Gum disease
  • Hookworm
  • Roundworm
  • Giardia
  • Salmonella

Viruses (such as the flu) tend to stick to one species, but if your immune system is compromised at all, you should fend off Fido. People recovering from organ transplants, fighting cancer, or living with HIV should avoid kissing pets.

Your Minneapolis dental team loves dogs as much as anyone, but we want our patients to have healthy mouths, too. If you have any questions or concerns about dog kisses or oral hygiene, get in touch with Dr. Maggie Craven Thompson at Skyway Dental Clinic today.

The content of this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.

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