Does your dog have bad breath? Most dogs aren’t exactly known for giving minty-fresh kisses, but if your pooch has a particularly bad odor about his mouth, you may need to pay some extra attention to his teeth. Just like people, dogs can develop dental issues, which can lead to other problems. Some common dental issues in dogs include abscessed teeth, cracked teeth, periodontal disease, and misaligned teeth. Your pup won’t necessarily show any signs of his dental problems. By the time Fido starts showing symptoms, such as excessive drooling, difficulty eating, or growths, he could have severe issues.
Here are a few tips on how to keep your canine pal’s mouth in good shape:
Brush Fido’s Teeth
Fido may be less than enthusiastic about you poking around in his mouth, but most dogs will learn to tolerate having their choppers brushed, particularly if you follow up with a yummy treat. This will of course be much easier if you start while your pooch is a pup, but even older dogs can learn to tolerate a toothbrush. Pick a time when your dog is a bit tired from exercise. It’s very important that you use toothpaste specifically formulated for dogs, as the fluoride found in human toothpaste is toxic to our canine pals. Work at a 45-degree angle. If your furry pal starts to get annoyed, stop and try again another day.
When your pup gets a dental bone for a snack, he’s getting both a treat and help with his teeth. Dental bones do help keep plaque from forming on Fido’s teeth. Just like it does with humans, plaque will harden and form tartar. Once that happens, it can lead to inflamed gums, halitosis, and periodontal disease. While dental bones are great, your dog’s teeth still may need some care, since there are some spots a dental bone won’t reach, particularly in dogs with uneven bites.
Chew treats are also good for your furry pal’s oral health. They will help strengthen his jaw, and will promote the formation of saliva, which will help keep your dog’s mouth clean. Chances are he’ll love cleaning his teeth this way!
Dry kibble can also help keep plaque under control. Some formulas are made specifically to help with canine dental issues. They may have larger kibbles, or be made with a formula that doesn’t crumble as easily.
If you think your dog may be developing some dental issues, check with your vet for advice on how best to help your furry pal’s teeth stay strong and healthy.