Dog Saliva, Good or Bad?

All mouths have bacteria that live there, dogs are no exception. With exception of right after a dog eating something nasty there is plenty of evidence that dog saliva itself does have antiseptic properties. Old Wives Tale? Maybe, but that doesn't mean it isn't true. Seen your dog lick himself into a sore/infection? That is obsessive behavior not the saliva that caused it. There are good and bad bacteria. Yogurt is full of bacteria but doesn't cause infection. The presence of bacteria,
unless identified specifically, means nothing. Here are some article for your reading pleasure:
Lysozyme keeps a mouth clean by neutralizing bacteria:

I personally have not gotten ill or been infected by any far out bacteria or virus as a result of my dog licking me, NEVER. I've seen plenty of evidence indicating the opposite.

Asked by Lady on Apr 17th 2008 Tagged dogsaliva in Other Health & Wellness
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I agree with you that it would be rare to become ill from a dog licking/kissing, but what I mentioned in the other answer was specifically about having a dog lick a WOUND, not unbroken, healthy skin.

I wouldn't advise people with a cut on their finger to stick their finger in their mouth, either.

Staph infections can have an interesting link to pets. Dogs aren't colonized with staph, but the PEOPLE they live with can be and the the dog becomes a carrier with no harm coming to them. If the owner's immunity is down because of illness or infection, having a dog lick them could cause a hard to cure staff infection. There was a JAMA article about this last month.

Let's face it, people survived the middle ages, so we're pretty resistant to bacteria. But, that doesn't mean it is ever a good idea to expose broken flesh to ANY tongue. There may be good bacteria in there (who knows) but there's plenty of bad stuff which could cause problems for someone with a weakened immune system.

Jack answered on Apr 17th.

Other Answers



Thanks for that bit of info. I didn't think that my Tiffy could hurt me with her kisses.

♥Tiffy♥ answered on 4/17/08. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 0 Report this answer

Gray Dawn Treader

My dad thinks that a dog's mouth is filthy because when a dog bite's someone they give them a tetanus shot. My take is ANY puncture wound receives a tetanus shot, and if a person made a puncture wound on another person they would require a tetanus shot too. Whenever I bring that up, my dad says to quit talking about it.

Gray Dawn Treader answered on 4/17/08. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 0 Report this answer