Top Tips For Taking Care of Your Dog’s Teeth
March 29, 2022
Just like humans, dogs are also susceptible to dental disease and with regular brushing it is also preventable.
Plaque is a layer of saliva, food and bacteria that form a layer on our teeth. A build-up of plaque can develop into tartar and if left untreated can cause painful gum disease, infections, tooth loss and can also risk bacteria building up in other parts of the body, causing serious health issues.
The best way to remove plaque is to brush your dogs’ teeth regularly. Occasional brushing won’t get rid of tartar, but it will stop the plaque from building up.
Brushing teeth should always be a fun and positive experience so you pup enjoys the process. Ideally you should start while when they are puppies so that that it is a familiar routine, but it’s never too late to introduce this important health routine.
Here’s our top tips on tooth brushing from home:
There are many different types of tooth brushes that you can use, ranging from traditional looking toothbrushes to finger brushes, which slide onto your fingers. Dog toothbrushes tend to be smaller and have softer bristles so children’s toothbrushes can also be used to help you get into all the parts of your dog’s mouth
You should never use human toothpaste as they contain many ingredients that aren’t made for dogs. There are so many different types of toothpastes available and you can purchase from your vets, pet store or pet supply store. The important thing is that they fight plaque and tartar. Your pup will be happy as most are very appealing and come in flavours such as chicken and beef.
Familiarising your dog with all the different parts of toothbrushing beforehand will teach them not to be afraid. To test your dog’s willingness, you can start by touching your pup’s mouth and running your fingers along the outside of the gums to get them used to you touching their mouth and teeth. Once you are confident at this stage, you can then progress to touching their teeth and gums, try doing this for a few days before actually using the toothbrush
Give your pup a taste of the toothpaste from your finger, then you can progress to letting them eat off the toothbrush, again this will help familiarise them with the tastes and tools that you will be using
Choose the right time to brush your dogs’ teeth, it should be when you are both relaxed. Try getting down to their level so you aren’t standing over them or in a threatening stance and use the toothbrush in small, gentle circles. Your goal is to set a routine and working on daily brushing is the most ideal, but even three times a day can make a real difference.
Start out with the easiest teeth to reach until they become more confident with the process. Lift the upper lip and brush inside and out of all surfaces in a circular motion.
End On A Positive Note
Try to stop while everyone is still having fun, even if you don’t get all the teeth brushed for the first few times. Make sure you praise and reward your dog after each session.