Dog Tooth Brushing
Your vet should as part of a complete physical examination and inspect the lips, teeth, and mouth of your dog. You as an owner should also take part in the maintenance of your dog’s oral health. We dogs can’t do it by ourselves; we need you to help to keep our mouth clean and healthy. A good dog tooth brushing is what we need, with some dog tasty toothpaste.
By the time we turn six months old, our permanent teeth are all in and plaque can start to accumulate on the tooth surfaces. This is when your dog needs to develop good dental-care habits to prevent calculus build-up on their teeth. Brushing is best!
It isn’t hard to brush your dog’s teeth, and it’s important for dogs as it is for human beings. It only takes 30 seconds and it should be done every day.
How to start?
It is not difficult to brush your dog’s teeth, and with positive training, it can become an enjoyable routine. A reward routine is the best way to introduce your dog to dental hygiene.
- Start with inviting your dog to come to an area of your home that you will specifically designate for brushing teeth.
- Ask your dog to sit and stay
- Once they do this offer them a treat
Now after a week or two, your dog thinks this is a great and a positive thing to do! So now, let’s introduce your dog to the idea of brushing.
- Repeat steps 1 and 2
- Place some doggie toothpaste on your index finger so your dog will become accustomed to the sensation of something running across the front of their teeth.
- Use gentle circular motions on the teeth and the gum line. (only brush the outside surfaces of the teeth, movement of the tongue maintains the inside surfaces.)
- Once your dog is comfortable with having their teeth brushed, introduce the tooth-brush. (a doggie finger brush that fits on your finger is an excellent choice)
- After your dog’s teeth are all clean, reward your dog with a small crunchy treat.
Note: You will need non-detergent toothpaste, flavored for dogs and a specially designed dog toothbrush. Do not use human toothpaste, dogs can’t spit out toothpaste, and swallowing human toothpaste will lead to gastrointestinal trouble.
My dog says “No-Way”…Other options than you can do
My dog says no-way, get out of my mouth! If you have tried and your dog absolutely will not allow you to brush their teeth, here are some suggestions to try.
- You can use various gels and rinses designed for dogs to reduce dental disease.
- A good quality crunchy cookie can help with oral hygiene.
- Specially designed chews, that will massage the gums and improves the blood circulation to the periodontal tissues.
Things to look for when checking your dog’s teeth. If you see any of these signs you should contact your veterinarian.
- make sure there are no sores
- foreign objects stuck in the gums or between teeth
- bad breath
- red, puffy or bleeding gums
- loose teeth
- Also, if you see your dog shake his head after eating, or is reluctant to eat, or cries out in pain while eating, or excessive dog drool
If you start your oral care dog and good chewing habits as a puppy, they will have healthier teeth throughout their life. Remember, in addition, to home care, it is important to get your dog’s teeth checked out every six months by a vet. Depending on the individual care, professional cleaning may be required.