It is not uncommon for people to feel uncomfortable when their dog gives them a sloppy kiss on the lips. The idea of where their dog’s mouth has been can be off-putting. However, recent research suggests that kissing our pets may have some surprising health benefits. Researchers at the University of Arizona are studying the unique bond between dogs and humans to understand what drives this relationship. They have found that people who have dogs tend to be healthier, including both children and adults. Children, in particular, experience fewer immune problems like asthma and allergies when exposed to dogs. The researchers propose that the exposure to the “cooties” carried by dogs may have a probiotic effect. The good bacteria found in dogs may boost our immune response by promoting the growth of healthy bacterial colonies in our bodies. While we await the research results, it is interesting to consider that our dogs may contribute to our health on both a lifestyle level and a micro level. So, if you’re a dog lover who can’t resist those doggie kisses, there may be some unexpected benefits to embracing them.