"Eskimo Kisses"

Posted by Pia

As a child I remember giggling hysterically when anyone would give me an "Eskimo Kiss." Rubbing noses seemed funny to begin with and then being told it was how Eskimo's Kiss, seemed kinda neat at the time. As one who loves 'snout to snout' critter photos, I decided to research 'Eskimo Kissing' a bit further...

Back
1 of 5
According to many an urban myth, Eskimos kissed by way of the rubbing their noses together to avoid their lips freezing together if they were to kiss lips to lips. 
Photo of Kitten and Lucky by Robinacsu.

1 According to many an urban myth, Eskimos kissed by way of the rubbing their noses together to avoid their lips freezing together if they were to kiss lips to lips. Photo of Kitten and Lucky by Robinacsu.

Apparently the western interpretation of the Eskimo kiss is based on a greeting in Eskimo culture called 'Kunik.'
Pinta and Tiger. Contributed by furfun.

2 Apparently the western interpretation of the Eskimo kiss is based on a greeting in Eskimo culture called 'Kunik.' Pinta and Tiger. Contributed by furfun.

A Kinuk is a platonic, yet intimate way for two people (or those from other species) to greet one another in certain cold climates.
Bogie and Dude. Contributed by Nancykbee.

3 A Kinuk is a platonic, yet intimate way for two people (or those from other species) to greet one another in certain cold climates. Bogie and Dude. Contributed by Nancykbee.

It likely developed as way to convey closeness or positive regard between those who typically had only their nose and eyes exposed, due to freezing cold weather.

4 It likely developed as way to convey closeness or positive regard between those who typically had only their nose and eyes exposed, due to freezing cold weather.

Early explorers of the earth's Arctic region dubbed this behavior as

5 Early explorers of the earth's Arctic region dubbed this behavior as "Eskimo kissing."

Pretty neat huh? Perhaps this explains my affinity for 'snout to snout' photos of all species!

I recall the "Eskimo Kisses" I showered upon my childhood cat often met with some annoyance. I do hope she knew I was simply conveying my love and affection for her...as annoying as that may have been.
Meow!

In kinship,
Dr. Pia Salk

Comments (8)

  • Hey there Dt. Pia,
    I love giving Eskimo kisses. I especially love giving them to people who don't want them. hehehehe
    Don't worry gang, I will be posting from my other house in Maryland. As you all know, chows are very smart. I had a clause put into my contract that I had to have the use of a computer at both houses. I would be very sad if I could not keep in touch with my blogger buddies. Speaking of my friends, where is Zoe? Guess what today is? BATH DAY. My mom said I have to look presentable to go to Maryland. Actually, I like bath day but I won't tell anyone that. I don't want to ruin my image.
    Have a great day everyone.
    Maddox

  • Hello Dr. Pia,
    I loved, loved, loved, seeing all the happy eskimo kissing today. I am always happy to put the word out on needed adoptions etc. that you post on the blog, but it makes for such a wonderfully, happy, summer day when it is just fun stuff. Love you!! Oh, Maddox, Zoe is on vacation this week because her Mom went to Italy to see her nephew play sports. Lucky her, but I bet Zoe is getting lots of treats from her Dad, since Mom is gone. The bath thing isn't so bad. Since I have been on new medication for this Crohn's Disease thing, sometimes I get the liquid stuff on my chest and my fur is really different, so I got a bath on Monday. Actually it felt good. It took Mom forever to dry me with the dryer. How long does it take for you to get dried? Glad you put the blogger thing in your contract Maddox, I would really miss you. You and Kirby are my dude support. I miss Mrs. Bosley Chow Chow. Don't know what ever happened to her. Does anyone? Have a great day all!!!
    Love & licks,
    Basil

  • Way too cute!!! I love these images and the information on Eskimo kisses...I also love 'snout to snout' photos and getting a nose to nose from my Kitty.
    When I say to her kiss-kiss she touches or licks my nose...I find it endearing, even-though she has a rough tongue.

    Have a great weekend Dr. Pia and all my friends here, remember the Heat can kill a pet easily in this heat.

  • Hello ladies, Kirby here.
    And hello to you too Dr. Pia. Well I really don’t like to rub noses very much. It really takes a special “one” for me to rub noses with. You do know that’s how colds are spread don’t you? If the other one is really special, getting a cold is worth it. Anyway, Maddox it’s bath day for me too; just a soon at this thunderstorm passes. Now I don’t like a bath and don’t mind telling anyone. I have learned one thing; when told to step into the tub it doesn’t matter how hard I try not obey, I will step into the tub. Mommy and daddy will see that I do. The water is really not too hot or cold; ah, just right.
    Catch you later, Kirby.

  • The way I get my 'eskimo kisses' is at 4 in the morning when Sadie (brat cat) starts pawing at my face then starts to lick me. She thinks she is a dog. What would we expect after being raised by beagles?!?! Then after waking me up she goes and curls up with one of the dogs. Go figure. T.

  • Hi Dr. Pia, Today's photos are absolutely darling! I love everyone of them and my favorite is #1! That baby kitten is so precious and that big dog is darling!! When my sweet little Dudley Do Right and I go for a walk, we always meet new friends for him and he always "Eskimo Kisses" everyone of them as well as a neighbor's cat! How fun is that?! Hope you have a great weekend and so glad all of our Daily Wag friends are doing so well!! Jan

  • I'm sitting here with tears in my eyes remembering the "Eskimo kisses" from my father 60 years ago. I had forgotten all about that...thank you so much for the wonderful feeling coming back and the memory of my dad.

  • wow! a photo of a fellow cattle-dog getting an eskimo kiss...doesn't get much better than that...can hardly wait to tell my pal, the rototiller, a red heeler (cattle dog) ...cattle-dogs rule!!! Oh by the way, I am bluey..over and out..cora-belle p.s. I bathe in the river in front of my house...no way you're washing me!!

Post a comment

Comments are moderated, and will not appear on this weblog until the author has approved them.