Having healthy teeth doesn’t just apply to humans, but animals as well, like our loving pets.
The Importance of Healthy Teeth
Be honest – how many of you actually make an effort to brush your teeth at least twice a day, floss regularly and use fluoride-free mouthwash?
Perhaps not all of us do, but when it comes to our pets, we have a responsibility as their owners to help them maintain their teeth.
Why Is It Important to Maintain the Dental Health of My Dog?
Believe it or not, almost 80% of dogs will experience some sort of dental issue throughout their lives. Dental problems in dogs are more a lot more common than you think.
While the severity varies, this problem still exists and can cause discomfort and pain to your dog. Your dog’s dental health is an important component of its holistic health care and this alone makes it important. Dental gum issues can lead to heart problems for dogs too!
A Bad Tooth Hurts, Even for Your Dog
Most of us aren’t strangers to a bad toothache and the implications it carries.
A bad tooth hurts everyone, whether it’s you or your pet dog. We know how awful a throbbing toothache can be – it can literally stop us from functioning or being able to focus on anything else. Your dog can also experience this too if it has dental problems.
The Effects of Poor Dog Dental Health
Another thing that can happen because of poor dental health is the tooth slowly being destroyed and causing serious issues like infections.
These infections can spread further from your dog’s mouth and they can be dangerous; even life-threatening. Your dog can end up losing his teeth, being in a lot of pain and experiencing a hard recovery.
You, on the other hand, will spend a lot of time worrying, stressing out and feeling guilty towards your pet while spending a lot of money to get the issue solved.
This is why prevention is the most effective cure.
Prevention and improvement in your dog dental health take place through three important approaches that apply even to us as well: a healthy diet, regular cleaning and regular checks with the dentist.
Common Signs of Dental Problems in Dogs
What are the main warning signs that there’s a problem with your dog’s oral health?
- Foul-smelling breath
- Excessive drooling
- Swollen and/or bleeding red gums
- Dropping food from the mouth while chewing
- Pawing at the mouth
- Refusal to eat or weight loss
- The appearance of yellow-brown plaque on the teeth and tartar
- Reduced interest in eating dry pet food or hard dog treats
Can My Dog Live With Dental Disease?
Here’s the thing with dogs – even if it experiences chronic pain on a daily basis, it will naturally try to hide it like other animals do to prevent showing weakness.
While it’s uncommon for the symptoms of gum disease to show, if you do notice them, it may mean that the disease has progressed to an advanced stage. What’s worse is that gum disease occurs in dogs 5 times more often than in humans.
This is because the more alkaline mouth in dogs encourages plaque to form.
As dental problems can lead to a reluctance to eat, it may be detrimental to your dog’s health as it reduces their food intake and may lead to malnutrition and starvation. Therefore, it is necessary to treat your dog’s dental problems immediately while seeking methods to prevent them from happening again.
What Are the Dog Breeds That Tend to Have More Dental Issues?
Not all dogs are the same, and there are some breeds that are more likely to experience dental problems.
For example, Yorkshire terriers have persistent baby teeth that don’t go away and end up fighting for space with adult teeth. The extra teeth mean more tartar accumulation and persistent bad breath.
- Yorkshire Terrier
- Shih Tzu
- English Bulldog
A Healthy Diet to Help Your Dog’s Dental Health
A healthy mix of dry and wet food will not only take care of your dog’s tummy, but also your dog’s teeth.
A good package of dog food contains nutrition that gives your dog energy and feeds it vitamins that make its coat and teeth stronger and shinier. Healthy dog treats your dog can chew on and enjoy can also improve the dental health of your dog as he nibbles on them in complete bliss.
How Can I Improve My Dog’s Dental Health?
To put it simply – clean teeth means fresh breath. Clean teeth will most likely mean healthy teeth if you do this regularly. So, get a toothbrush for your furry family member as well! As silly as it sounds, brushing your dog’s teeth does what brushing teeth does for you – it prevents them from going bad.
It would be great if you can turn this into a daily ritual where you sit down and brush your dog’s teeth, maybe after its last meal of the day.
However, you don’t do this with your regular toothpaste – there are products that are specifically made for your dog’s dental health that you can use. And of course, not all dogs will enjoy their teeth being brushed, so sometimes you have to get a little creative.
At least, on the worst days when the toothbrush stands no chance in your dog’s mouth, they may do the trick. Check out these inexpensive dog treats that are good for their teeth! As pet owners ourselves, we give our dogs these treats too and they love it!
Here are a few products to help you successfully take care of your dog’s dental health even when it hates the brush, so both of you can have a nice, shiny smile:
- Petkin Plaque Gel: This is a great product to use on a daily basis without having to struggle with using a toothbrush and chasing your dog around. Simply squeeze a bit of the product on the teeth on both sides of the mouth, and that’s it! The Petkin Plaque Gel is great for younger dogs and puppies starting from 6 weeks of age.
- Petkin Plaque Spray: Once again, avoid using a brush and take care of your dog’s dental health daily by simply spraying this product on your dog’s teeth. You do not have to rinse the product or brush it – just make sure you spray it nicely.
- There is also a version of this product that you can spray on your dog’s food instead of spraying it on its teeth. This spray will help your dog have nicer and fresher breath without noticing the product as it does not leave any taste or smell over the food.
- If you’re looking for something that doesn’t involve brushing but still allows you to rub against your dog’s teeth to give them a nice cleaning, then Petkin’s Plaque Tooth Wipes might be a good choice for you. Again, this is very simple to use and needs no rinsing. However, this is a product you should consider using only if you know your dog isn’t going to bite you or hurt you, and you should gently rub the wipe against its teeth and clean them.
- Petkin’s Chew Toy Spray – This spray will help you turn your dog’s favourite toy into its toothbrush. It is bacon-flavoured, so it might be a little odd for the rubber ducky that they chew on to smell like bacon – but surely they won’t mind. Just like with the food spray, you simply spray this over the toy and let the rest work its magic.
Finding the right products that you can use on a daily basis to help keep your dog dental health in shape should always be on your mission checklist. You know your dog best, so if you feel like you can use a toothbrush to get in there and clean his teeth, then do so.
Even this is a training process for most dogs, so you can always consult with your vet about how to safely brush your dog’s teeth. In the meantime, we hope these products help you.
Remember that it is never too early to start thinking about your dog dental health. Even from a very early age when they are still a puppy, you should make sure that their teeth are always clean. Like we mentioned above, regular cleaning, regular checks with your vet and a healthy diet will prevent dental problems greatly.
So, make sure that your dog always has a bright, clean smile, and fresh breath – because good dog dental health improves their overall health.