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There’s bad news for all beard lovers out there. A new study has found that bearded men harbor more germs in their facial hair than dogs carry in their fur.
In a shocking revelation, researchers found every sampled beard to contain bacteria, with half of them carrying hazardous germs.
Contrarily, the microbes levels were much lower in a number of sampled dogs.
Beard lovers worldwide are left stunned with the findings, with most of them claiming the whole thing to arise from pogonophobia – the fear of beards.
The study authors were looking to discover if humans can suffer a dog-borne disease by using an MRI scanner previously used for examinations by vets.
Scientists took swabs from the necks of 30 dogs belonging to different breeds and from the beards of 18 men, aged from 18 to 76.
‘The researchers found a significantly higher bacterial load in specimens taken from the men’s beards compared with the dogs’ fur,’ Professor Andreas Gutzeit, of Switzerland’s Hirslanden Clinic, said.
Shockingly, all of the men had high microbial counts, and only 23 out of 30 dogs had similar counts. The remaining dogs had microbes at moderate levels.
Seven bearded men even harbored microbes that could threaten human health.
Moreover, when the MRI scanners were disinfected after examining humans, the bacteria count was found to be ‘significantly’ higher than the levels seen when used by dogs.
‘On the basis of these findings, dogs can be considered as clean compared with bearded men,’ Dr Gutzeit said.
The findings of the study have been disputed by Keith Flett, the founder of the Beard Liberation Front.
‘I think it’s possible to find all sorts of unpleasant things if you took swabs from people’s hair and hands and then tested them,’ Keith said.
‘I don’t believe that beards in themselves are unhygienic.
‘There seems to be a constant stream of negative stories about beards that suggest it’s more about pogonophobia than anything else.’
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