Five Tips to Keep Your Pup’s Teeth Clean
Next time you’re at the pet store, you may want to grab some canine toothpaste in addition to your usual pet shopping list items. The majority of dogs shows signs of gum disease by just three years old, according to The American Veterinary Dental College. In the excitement of playing and caring with our dogs, we sometimes overlook the importance of dental care. Keep your pooch’s teeth fresh and clean by following these five dental tips:
- While it may seem a bit ridiculous, brushing your dog’s teeth is the most effective way to maintain oral health, according to The American Veterinary Dental College. Many dogs initially shy away from the toothbrush, so be sure to allow a slow and gradual transition into teeth cleaning. Practice a circular motion along the gum line and aim for at least 3-4 brushes a week to keep the plaque from coming back.
- Perform a weekly mouth care check by lifting your dog’s lips. Examine his teeth, making sure there is no brown tartar, and his gums, which should be pink, not white or red. If you notice inflamed gums or bad breath, you should consult your dog’s veterinarian.
- Dental chews come in all shapes and sizes, and they will surely appeal to your food-crazed pup. Although dog chews won’t outnumber the benefits of brushing, natural rawhide chews or knucklebones may reduce dirt or plaque buildup in your dog’s teeth. The Veterinary Oral Health Council approves Greenies®, Del Monte Tartar Check® Dog Biscuits, Bright Bites, OraVet® Dental Hygiene Chews and Vetradent Dog Chews as edible dog chews.
- Avoid giving your dog any hard bones from steak, rib or ham shanks. These may fracture or severely damage your dog’s teeth.
- Keep an eye out for doggie dental products with the “VOHC-approved” stamp. These products have met the protocols established by the Veterinary Oral Health Council and are safe bets for your pet’s teeth.
Do you have any doggie dental health tips or experience with your pup’s gum disease? We’d love to hear you share your dog’s stories in the comments below.