A happy smile = a happy pet

A happy smile = a happy pet

Home dental care is one of the best ways to help keep your dog’s teeth and gums healthy. Start as early as possible in your canine friend’s life so he or she will become accustomed to the brushing process.

What should I use to brush my dog’s teeth?
Use a moistened dog toothbrush with soft bristles. If you do not have a specially designed pet toothbrush, you can also use a child’s toothbrush, a finger toothbrush, gauze around a finger or a cotton swab.

Do I need to use a special toothpaste to brush my dog’s teeth?
Pet toothpaste, often flavored like poultry, malt and other dog-friendly varieties, is your best option. Never use human toothpaste. While safe for you, these cleaning agents can be harmful to your dog if swallowed.

At-home teeth cleaning tips
Keep the following tips in mind to make the process easier for you and more comfortable for your dog:

  • Give your dog a small sample of the toothpaste to introduce the taste.
  • Lift the lip to expose the outside surfaces of your dog’s gums and teeth.
  • Brush with gentle motions to clean the teeth and gums, as you would your own.
  • Clean the outside (cheek-facing) surfaces, as most pets will not allow you to brush the inside surface of the teeth and this area is often cleaned by their own tongue.
  • Be sure to reach the back upper molars and canines, as these teeth tend to quickly build up tartar.
  • Reward your dog with play, petting or a favorite activity to positive make brushing their teeth more positive.

How often should I brush my dog’s teeth at home?
Your dog’s teeth should be brushed as often as possible, ideally every day. There are numerous dental care products, pastes, solutions, brushes, chew toys and dental diets that help you provide your dog with the home dental care he deserves. For advice on these products and treatments visit your local Severn Edge vet.

How often should I have my dog’s teeth professionally cleaned?
Even with a diligent at-home dental care routine, adult dogs should have their teeth professionally cleaned at least once per year. These cleanings allow us to assess your dog’s overall oral health and thoroughly prevent against tartar buildup, gingivitis or gum disease  and other conditions that can lead to life-threatening illnesses such as organ failure and heart disease if left untreated.