Pets are licking their owners to express love and affection, but one such case in the UK almost ended tragically.

John Oxford, professor of virology and bacteriology at Queen Mary University in London, recently told the British media that the saliva of dogs can be dangerous.

– It’s not just about what saliva contains. Dogs spend half of their life pushing their nose into the dirty corners or feces of other dogs, so their snouts are full of bacteria and viruses – says Oxford.

A woman from Great Britain has learned that lick of her pet may be very dangerous. After she was infected with the saliva of her Italian greyhound, she ended in intensive care due to multiple body failure for few weeks.

Case “kiss of death” is described in a scientific portal BMJ. The first symptom of infection was slurred conversation women with her cousin, who told her to call an ambulance. While the ambulance arrived, the woman lost consciousness. Since she was given medications at the hospital her condition stabilized. She said she had no symptoms other than headaches the night before.

After a few days the condition began to deteriorate again and it happened something very dangerous – began failing of kidneys. What followed were many complications, decreased functionality, and respiratory and liver problems.

She was urgently moved to the intensive care when it became clear she was suffering from sepsis, known as blood poisoning.

She was infected with a rare bacterium Capnocytophaga canimorsus which is found in the saliva of dogs and cats. As her pet did not bite her, doctors concluded that the infection is because the dog licked her face.

After two weeks she went home with antibiotic treatment.

In Britain, 13 similar cases were recorded, but this statistic is relevant also in the United States.