If you have a beard, or know someone who has one, then there is some rather bad news that has come out of recent research.
A study conducted by Professor Andreas Gutzeit, of Switzerland's Hirslanden Clinic, found that those who possess beards have a substantial amount more germs than the average dog. What is worse is that the bacteria crawling around in the human beard was found to be hazardous to human health.
With the study, scientists wanted to discover whether there was a risk that humans might pick up a dog-borne disease from an MRI scanner that was also used for examinations by vets. Researchers took swabs from the beards of 18 men and the necks of 30 dogs, across a range of breeds, and compared the results.
Professor Gutzeit said, "The researchers found a significantly higher bacterial load in specimens taken from the men's beards compared with the dogs' fur.' The study found all of the bearded men, aged from 18 to 76, showed high microbial counts, but only 23 out of 30 dogs had high counts. The remainder had moderate levels."
After the MRI exams of the dogs, the scanners were disinfected and showed a 'significantly' lower bacteria count compared with levels seen when used by humans.
On the basis of these findings, dogs can be considered as clean compared with bearded men,