May 22, 2022, 22:05 | Animals
Learn about whether and how safe it is to kiss your dog, and why dogs love to lick their owners' faces.
Generous drooling kisses are probably the best reward for dog owners. At least some of them think so. And for others, the prospect of being licked by a dog causes nothing but disgust. Whether you enjoy playing "Kissing" with your pet or not so much, let's figure out whether you should let a dog lick you, informs Ukr.Media.
Why does a dog lick its owner?
A dog learns to lick at birth. Immediately after birth, the mother licks the puppies to clear their airways and help them start breathing on their own, and the puppies learn to lick their mothers. This instinct remains in the dog throughout its life. In the process of licking, endorphins are produced in them, which give a feeling of happiness and help get rid of stress, so some animals begin to persistently lick their owner when they feel anxiety. In a dog pack, licking serves as a sign of submission to the dominant members of the pack. However, licking a person is usually a show of affection, but sometimes your pet just likes your 'taste'.
Are dog kisses safe?
The myth that a dog's mouth is cleaner than a human's mouth, and its saliva has a healing effect, has been finally debunked. Considering the fact that they sometimes eat excrement and lick their own genitals, we can say that the dog's mouth is actually a "kingdom" microbes However, although dangerous bacteria such as Salmonella and E. coli, as well as parasites such as Giardia and Cryptosporidium are found in animal saliva, their numbers are usually not high enough to pose a threat to humans, and there is very little evidence that these pathogens are transmitted through canine "kisses".
When canine "kisses" dangerous?
Despite the fact that for most people the risk of contracting diseases through contact with dog saliva is extremely low, for some pet saliva is very dangerous. We warn that people from the following categories should avoid such close contact with a four-legged friend:
- Pregnant women.
- Elderly people.
- People suffering from acne and other skin pathologies, open wounds and scratches on the face.
- People with damage to the nervous system, including people undergoing chemotherapy treatment, AIDS patients, diabetes or have just recovered from an illness.
You can reduce the risk of contracting diseases through licking by being a responsible owner. Regular veterinary examinations, stool tests, deworming and prevention of ectoparasites will help to significantly reduce the chance of infection from a pet. Proper disposal of dog excrement and thorough hand washing significantly reduce the risk of spreading diseases. In addition, it is important to carefully prepare food for the animal. Never give raw foods that can be a source of bacterial infection, such as meat or pig ears, which dogs like to chew. First of all, choose a balanced food with a recipe specially selected taking into account the state of health of your dog. It is also necessary to brush your pet's teeth regularly to maintain oral health and prevent the growth of bacteria.
Put an end to dog 'kissing'< /strong>
It may not be dangerous to allow your pet to lick your face and lips, but if you don't want to risk it, it's better to stop this behavior at the root. Dog trainers say the best way to wean a dog from kissing is to get up and walk away, completely ignoring the unwanted behavior each time. This will deprive the dog of the encouragement it received in response to the kiss, and gradually stop even trying to behave in a similar way.
If you enjoy exchanging kisses with your pet, it may be worth doing so only when your immune system is strong. the system is in perfect order. And if just the thought of being licked by your four-legged friend makes you run for antibacterial soap, then your attitude is also completely justified. So, whether or not to allow a dog to lick your face depends on your health and willingness to take risks. After all, there are plenty of other ways to show your pet your love, so don't worry if kissing isn't your method.