Did you know that at least 2/3 of adult dogs have inflammation or infection of the tissues surrounding their teeth, known as gingivitis and periodontitis, or gum disease? Part of caring for a pet is caring for their dental health as well. Read on for some tips to make brushing your dog’s teeth as “paw-sitive” as “paw-sible!”
- Use the Right Tools
- Be Consistent
- Calm Environment
- Start Young
- Reward Them
Don’t use human dental tools on your beloved furry friend. Our toothpaste can be toxic to dogs if swallowed, causing an upset stomach or worse. At your local pet store or online, there are many oral care products specially-designed for dogs. Rather than mint, they get meat-flavored toothpaste, which will make it much more enjoyable for them. We quite like this poultry-flavored enzymatic dog toothpaste. We also recommend getting a soft-bristled pet toothbrush with a long handle. However, a child’s toothbrush with very soft bristles will work too. You could also wrap some gauze around your finger until they are comfortable with you touching their mouth. Moreover, dental chew treats are a great supplement to your dog’s oral hygiene routine; they help break up plaque and freshen up doggy breath.
Consistency is key! Make brushing your pet’s teeth a predictable part of their daily routine. Ideally, brush their teeth every day, but you can try every other day until they become accustomed to it. A super quick brushing is better than nothing.
Promote a calm and comfortable environment while brushing your dog’s teeth. Choose a place that your dog is familiar with and eliminate any distracting outside noises so your dog feels safe and as relaxed as possible.
All forms of training work best when you start early. Make daily brushing of the teeth part of their puppy training routine. But if you didn’t or couldn’t start when they were young, don’t worry—even an old dog can learn new tricks with enough encouragement!
After the teeth cleaning is done, reward your pooch for their patience with a walk, playtime, or belly rubs. This will positively reinforce the brushing experience. Eventually, they might start looking forward to it if they know happy things are to follow.
Remember to Care for Your Own Teeth!
Brushing your dog’s teeth is just as important as brushing your own. Daily oral hygiene will ensure you both have smiles worthy of the “pup-arazzi.” Contact our Littleton dental team at Summit Family Dentistry to schedule a six-month cleaning and exam to check up on the health of your smile.Contact Us Today