No matter how bad of a day you’re having there is always one thing waiting at home to love you, cuddle you and kiss you… your dog. Make sure those cuddles and kisses aren’t ruined by bad breath or oral disease by providing your beloved pup with the proper dog dental care.
As a dog owner, you know that you’re responsible for grooming, feeding, nurturing and maintaining proper health care for your four-legged family. Taking care of your dog’s teeth is important. Just like human dental care, dog dental care is about more than just keeping teeth white and breath fresh. The main reason for cleaning dog’s teeth is to prevent oral disease. Oral disease can affect dogs in many ways. Dental problems can lead to liver, kidney, and even heart disease. Dog teeth cleaning is really another way that you can take care of their whole body. You can prevent your dog from getting dental problems with regular dental cleanings and professional checkups. You can brush your dog’s teeth yourself, but you’ll need a few things.
Symptoms of Poor Dog Dental Hygiene
Symptoms can include bad breath, excessive drooling, inflamed or bleeding gums, crying or whining while chewing, refusing to chew, loss of interest in their food or the loss of teeth.
Brushing your dog’s teeth right requires you to be gentle, patient, and use the right tools. Your dog may not be comfortable with dog teeth cleaning the first few times you try, but don’t give up. It’s for their own good, and you want to take care of them. Here’s what you’ll need:
- A Non-fluoride Dog Toothpaste – Since fluoride is toxic to dogs, you want to make sure that the toothpaste you buy is fluoride-free. There are many different flavors of dog toothpaste available.
- A Pet Toothbrush – Dog toothbrushes are usually soft-bristled to protect your dog’s gums. Be sure to pick one that isn’t too big for your dog’s teeth, or you could hurt their gums.
- Pet Dental or Gauze Sponges – Wrap these around your fingers while you hold your dog’s lips aside as you brush their teeth. This will keep you from getting nipped, and will give a soft cushion that will keep your dog’s lips and gums from getting sore. Dog teeth cleaning should be gentle and relaxed for your pup.
How To Brush Your Dog’s Teeth
The earlier you start your routine of dog teeth cleaning, the easier it will be. It will be easier to train the dog to behave while you brush, and you will not have to brush as hard to remove the buildup that can occur if you wait too long in your dog’s life to start brushing their teeth.
Training Your Dog for Teeth Cleaning
1. To train your dog, begin rubbing your fingers gently across their lips, gums, and teeth for a minute or so once every day. Do this for a few weeks before trying to brush their teeth. This will get the pup used to the feeling. If you have a toothbrush, incorporate it gradually.
2. Next, add some peanut butter to your fingers, and begin lifting your dog’s lips and rubbing their teeth. Do this for another week or so. Incorporate his dog toothbrush.
Dog Teeth Cleaning
1. Apply a small, pea-sized bead of toothpaste on your pet toothbrush.
2. Use your gauze-covered fingers to lift your dog’s lips and expose their teeth.
3. Take one section of teeth at a time and brush them much like you brush your own. Gently scrub up and down and side to side. Avoid brushing the gums.
NOTE: Never use a human toothbrush or human toothpaste on your dog’s teeth. The bristles on a human toothbrush are too harsh, and the fluoride and chemicals in human toothpaste can be toxic to dogs.
When to Get A Pro
If your dog’s teeth have a lot of discolored, hardened buildup, you’ll need to have them cleaned professionally. Also, if you notice any cavities or decay, have it checked out by a professional. Take your dog in for a dental exam and dog teeth cleaning every year or two. Once you get help for the more serious problems, you can maintain your dog’s dental health with regular brushing. Dog teeth cleaning will help keep your pup healthy, and you happy, for years to come. Dental Chews, chew toys and dental dog treats should also be a part of your dog’s dental care routine.