Pet dental health: How to brush your dog’s teeth, to prevent bad breath and ensure dental health

How to brush your dog’s teeth.

After reading the title, you may find yourself thinking that you have now heard it all. Brushing your dog’s teeth is just as important for them as it is for us to brush our own. Doggie dental care is a large market. Because tooth brushing combats the dreaded “doggie breath”, it has been making waves among pet owners. According to your vet, brushing your dog’s teeth takes a bite out of a lot of health issues that can be prevented.

Brush Your Dog's Teeth

Excess plaque and tarter build up on Fido’s teeth can lead to heart disease, gingivitis, liver disease, or kidney dysfunction. These severe side effects stem from periodontal disease, and 98% of dogs with halitosis are suffering from it. Our dogs only get one set of choppers after teething, and puppy dentures are expensive. This simple hygienic step can aid in extending the life of your pet. It can also prevent big vet bills for cleaning and crowns down the line. Tooth brushing should be done once a day, or at least three times a week whether they need it or not. Dogs, like humans, cannot digest fluoride. They also cannot swish and spit, so doggie toothpaste is a must. Most dog toothpaste is enzymatic. This helps cut down scrubbing time. It is usually flavored with chicken, beef, or liver so it tastes good too. Toothbrushes for dogs come in a variety of sizes and shapes. The small finger brushes work well on small dogs and puppies. The angled long brushes work well on large dogs and dogs with long muzzles. These simple steps can help you get Fido accustomed to a daily routine that will lengthen his/her life.

  1. Apply the flavored dog toothpaste to the chosen dog toothbrush.
  2. Allow your dog to sniff and examine the toothbrush and paste. This will help Fido to understand what is about to happen. It will also allow them to get used to the flavor.
  3. Gently place your hand over their muzzle and pull up the excess skin that is located in and around the jowls to expose the gum line and rear teeth.
  4. With the gum line and rear teeth exposed, apply the toothpaste on the brush to the teeth and gum area using a circular motion.

We don’t want to shock them with the new experience. Give your pet plenty of time to check out what we are doing. If they are licking and eager about the flavor and smell, this is a big plus. For our own protection, brushing should be done in a quiet familiar environment. The bathroom may appear to be the best place, but remember bathrooms are often associated with baths for Fido. This could lead to excess stress and nervousness if Fido does not approve of baths. While brushing, do not scrub or press too hard. We do not want the gums to bleed. If you have chosen dog toothpaste that is enzymatic, then there is no need to scrub and press. The enzymes in these products do most of the work for you. For areas that are yellowing or have excess tarter and plaque build up, apply extra toothpaste. The areas of heavy tarter and plaque are the exact things we are combating when we start. It is essential for health and halitosis to get these areas clean. If brushing is not making a significant change in these areas, talk to your vet about cleaning. During cleaning sessions, the dog is usually under anesthesia. For areas that are sensitive, inflamed, or bleeding, stop brushing and consult your vet.

It’s that simple. This tooth-brushing regimen will aid in keeping your dog healthy for years to come.

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