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Here’s Why a Puppy’s Breath Smells So Good

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We have all been there. Our sweet, adorable dog gives us a big slobbery kiss, and we must hold our nose to avoid the rancid smell emitted from their mouth. We understand where the term dog breath got its negative connotation.

Related: Cleaning Dog’s Teeth: The Secret to Stopping All Day Long Morning Breath

But it wasn’t always like that. For many, their leap into pet parenthood began when they brought home a puppy. And the smell of their puppy’s breath was a bit intoxicating. You wanted more kisses, not less.

So why does puppy breath smell so good? While some people believe it has to do with a puppy’s milk-only diet, veterinarian Lisa Aumiller of HousePaws Mobile Vet thinks it has to do with them being so young.

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“Puppy breath comes from a combination of gas leaking from the stomach — since the esophagus is still developing — and the fact that puppies have no plaque, tartar, or gingivitis,” Dr. Aumiller tells This Dog’s Life. “Once puppies start having their adult teeth emerging through the gums, basically causing gingivitis, puppy breath goes away.”

Dr. Aumiller adds that the milk theory doesn’t hold weight. “Some people think puppy breath is secondary to the lactose of the mother’s milk; however, most puppies in homes are no longer drinking mother’s milk. I think it’s mostly their good oral hygiene.”

So new dog parents take it all while you can.

Related: 7 Deadly Sins: The People Food You Should Never Feed Your Dog