21 Jul 2021
Routine dental hygiene is an important part of your pet's overall care. Over time, issues can develop if a pets teeth and mouth aren’t cleaned regularly. They can develop bad breath, tooth loss, dental disease, even organ damage - the bacteria that causes plaque can enter the bloodstream and travel through the body. That bacteria can then infect the liver, kidneys, and heart. Brushing your pet's teeth can prevent oral health issues and even extend their life expectancy.
It may sound overwhelming, but with the right tools and practice, it is quite easy to add home dental care to your routine pet care.
1. Brush their teeth regularly. How often you do this will depend on your pet's individual dental needs, but if you're just starting out, try once a week and increase as necessary. Try using treats as positive reinforcement before and after brushing. Visit your local pet store to find pet safe toothpaste and toothbrushes. Never use human toothpaste for your pets!
2. Give treats and chew toys that promote oral health. Treats and toys are another great way to manage pet dental health at home If you’ve tried brushing their teeth and your pet just doesn’t care for it, there are many treats and chew toys designed to help remove tartar and freshen their breath.
3. Schedule cleanings with your vet. Home dental care is no substitute for a dental cleaning, so ensure that you are scheduling regular cleanings for your pet at the vet. Vets use anesthesia so your pets are unconscious during the teeth cleaning. This is necessary to ensure the animals won’t move or feel anything uncomfortable and the vet can get a deeper, more thorough clean above and below the gumline.
Please consult your vet for recommendations if you have any questions on what toothpaste, treats, or chew toys are best for your pet’s oral health. Dental care is just another step we can take to ensure our pets have a long and healthy life.