While others debate which animal is cleaner:
Is it cats or dogs?
You’re here wondering:
“Am I cleaner than my dog?”
Well, you’re in for a neat surprise.
Continue reading to find out:
- How many bacteria are in a dog’s mouth.
- Whether you should let Fido lick your face or not.
- 3 reasons why dogs are actually cleaner than humans.
- And many, many more…
Table of contents
3 reasons why dogs are cleaner than humans
#1: They have fewer bacteria types in their mouth
Both dogs and humans have a lot of bacteria in their mouths.
But the real question is:
“Who has fewer bacteria in there?”
Well, in this case…
Your dog has fewer germs in their mouth. And I bet you’re surprised.
After all, Fidos do all sorts of weird things.
And so much more.
So, how is it that dogs have fewer germs than humans?
1 research from Harvard has an answer:
First, the human mouth has over 615 species of bacteria
Meanwhile, dogs only have around 600.
Well, that’s not a big difference, is it?
But it still means Fido has fewer things to worry about.
Your mouth has bacteria that you won’t find on your pup. And the same applies to vice versa.
Plus, another journal adds a theory:
Dogs might have fewer germs due to panting.
With that, the bacteria might fall off the pup’s mouth.
You know, like when Fido’s drool drops on the floor.
#2: Dog germs won’t make you sick
If you kiss your fur baby a lot, you might end up sick.
After all, even if your dog’s clean, they could still have germs all over them.
But if Fido licks you back, you’re still fine and healthy.
Or, here’s another example.
If you kiss your sick loved one, you might catch their cold.
But if an unwell dog licks you, nothing happens too.
So, what’s going on?
Does that mean human saliva is deadlier? Compared to puppies?
Well, not exactly.
The thing is, most germs in Fido’s mouth aren’t zoonotic. That means they don’t spread from 1 animal to another.
But, it doesn’t mean that pups can’t make you sick at all.
In reality, dogs can still carry diseases they can pass to you.
For example, vets say your furry pal could have issues like:
- Lyme disease.
Now, how exactly can a pup make you sick?
Well, experts say that could happen if Fido licks your:
These body parts can absorb your dog’s saliva easier. And that’s why you should avoid having your pup lick you on these spots.
Still, it’s rare for Fidos to make you sick.
But even if pups do, it’s often a minor issue.
That’s why people think that pups are cleaner than humans.
And since we’re talking about licking:
Did you know that saliva has histatins? These are proteins that fight off germs.
Now, dogs use that to lick their wounds.
“So, does that mean Fido can heal their cuts?”
It might sound like that.
But in reality, it doesn’t make wounds heal faster.
What really happens is:
Licking the wounds only keeps bacteria away. To simplify, it gives safety to the body.
With that, the open cut won’t have to last longer than it should.
Basically, licking prevents worsening the wound’s state.
That aside, wanna know what’s more interesting?
The human tongue has the histatins too. That means you can also lick your wounds. But only to avoid bacteria from coming in.
However, as the saying goes:
Just because you can, doesn’t mean you should.
After all, there are many safer products to clean up wounds.
So, let’s just stick to that instead, alright?
#3: Dogs need dental health care too
Like you and I…
Fido needs dental health care too.
And this could be 1 more reason why some people think:
“Dogs are cleaner than humans.”
But the thing is…
Both pups and fur parents are equal in this round.
After all, you and Fido could get dental diseases too. Thus, it doesn’t matter who’s cleaner. Or who has more bacteria in their mouth.
The important thing here is…
You should maintain your furry pal’s dental health too. As much as you take care of yours.
Cause if not, then the bacteria might build up on Fido’s teeth.
And that could lead to issues, like:
- Oral pain.
- Bad breath.
- Tooth decay.
- Gum diseases.
Warning: If left ignored, Fido could have an infection. Now, PetMD warns that it could spread to your dog’s body. Which can be fatal in the long run.
In that case…
How could you keep your dog’s teeth clean?
You can follow these 5 useful tips:
#1: Brush Fido’s teeth 1-2 times a day
To keep your furry friend clean…
You can use a doggie toothbrush for their teeth.
Plus, it’s good to start this as soon as Fido’s around 6 months old.
At this point, their teething phase is already over. Thus, brushing their teeth won’t be an issue.
“How do I brush my dog’s teeth?”
Well, it’s almost the same as humans.
But first, you need dog toothpaste.
That’s because your usual pastes can be toxic for Fido.
Next, follow these steps from vets:
Step 1: Make a routine
This helps your dog get used to toothbrushing.
Step 2: Wait for Fido to relax
It’s best not to force your pup.
So, if they seem nervous, don’t continue.
Step 3: Prepare your dog’s toothbrush
As a tip, use brushes with longer handles.
That works great. Especially for bigger dogs.
Step 4: Get on your pup’s level
This keeps Fido calm.
Step 5: Gently lift Fido’s mouth open
Ensure that you won’t do it this too fast.
That might lead to a sudden bite.
Step 6: Put some toothpaste on your finger
Rub a small amount of paste on Fido’s teeth.
This is 1 way to test their reaction to the toothpaste.
Step 7: If your dog stays calm, keep brushing their teeth
Use the brush in a circular motion.
And be careful not to hit your dog’s gums.
If you notice minor bleeding…
That’s normal too.
Now, you can do this for 3 to 5 minutes, only once or twice daily.
Not sure how to clean your dog’s teeth?
Check out this helpful clip:
#2: Give your dog raw bones
Bones aren’t just yummy treats for Fido.
You see, they also help get rid of tooth plaque.
So, by chewing on bones…
Your pup can reduce the number of bacteria in their mouth.
But, it can’t be any type of bone. It must be raw and fresh too.
Find out more: 5 Real Reasons Why Dogs Absolutely Love Bones
#3: Buy dental sticks for Fido
No time for bones?
You can also buy dental treats for your pooch.
Now, these are made for the oral benefits of your pup. And these sticks can get rid of Fido’s mouth bacteria too.
#4: Use dental powder
You can also add some flavor to your furry pal’s meals.
By using dental powders…
You can get rid of your dog’s:
- Bad breath.
- Oral bacteria.
And you can use this at least once a day, during feeding time.
#5: Try water additives
Fun fact: Dogs have fewer tastebuds than humans.
But do you know where canines excel? Well, pups taste water better than you and I.
In that case, you can try water additives for Fido.
Like dental powders, this helps keep your dog’s mouth clean.
But the only difference is:
You apply this product to your pup’s water, just as the name implies.
#BONUS: Talk to the vet
If you want to ensure that your dog’s clean all over…
You can always talk to an expert.
For one, vets can give medicine to your pooch. And vitamins to keep Fido even stronger.
Plus, when it comes to dental care…
A specialist can help you with that.
After all, just like you and I:
Some issues in canine teeth might need a dentist’s help. And it’s not something you can easily clean up at home.
Conclusion: Are dogs cleaner than humans?
Dogs aren’t cleaner than humans.
But it doesn’t mean that canines are the dirtiest either.
Both you and Fido have almost the same number of oral germs.
Thus, that means this ‘battle’ is a tie.
And in the end, all that matters is:
Your furry pal doesn’t make you sick from their germs.
Plus, as long as you keep your pooch clean…
Your dog will stay neat and healthy too.