Most pet parents will attest that their dog is the most kissable. But what do you do if Fido comes in for a smooch and his breath knocks you off your feet? When a pooch is plagued with foul-smelling breath-a condition I call Hounditosis-all paws are down for sweet-smelling exchanges. With 75 percent of pet parents saying that their dog’s health is as important as their own, owners need to be aware of potential repercussions if doggy requests for affection are snubbed because of bad breath.

As a dog owner/activist and editor of Animal Fair magazine, I’ve encountered many dogs-not all sweet smelling. Following are my tried-and-true tips for pet parents that helped groom Lucky into a pucker-up puppy, and can help turn your loyal friend into a smoochable pooch.

• Smooch Your Pooch: A recent contest by Kibbles ‘n Bits dog food searched for the most smoochable pooches across America. Annabelle, the winning Pug, from Richmond, Virginia, receives lots of kisses from owner Anika, who shares, “There’s no better way to show my love to Annabelle than by planting a big wet smooch on her!”

• Take a Bite Out of Bad Breath: Hounditosis can mean fewer pooch smooches, threatening the happiness of your dog and putting his health at risk. With Brushing Bites dog food, Kibbles ‘n Bits has stepped up to the plate with a solution that helps dogs get over the “stigma” of bad breath by delivering cleaner teeth and fresher breath, ultimately encouraging more smoochable moments.

• Consider the Dog’s View: A dog who has been banished to the outdoors has been deprived of the opportunity to form this important emotional bond with his parent, and this can lead to health problems such as depression, weight loss or even violence. Don’t put a pooch in the “doghouse” for bad breath-help pooches freshen up.

• Periodic Dental Checkups: Good dental hygiene is as important to man’s best friend as it is to man. If Hounditosis continues to persist, see your veterinarian to have him rule out any potentially serious conditions.

For more on Wendy Diamond and to view photos of America’s Most Smoochable Pooch, visit

Wendy Diamond is the editor of Animal Fair magazine. Ms. Diamond and her dog Lucky are frequent pet contributors to the “Today” show, “Fox News” and CNN.

By: Wendy Mitchell

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For pet expert Wendy Diamond, there’s quite nothing as sweet as Lucky, her smoochable pooch.

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