We’ve all heard of how a dog’s mouth is cleaner than a human’s.
Yes, dogs are at lesser risk of developing cavities than their
owners. However, oral and dental complaints in a dog can spiral
into much graver health risks which can impact the functioning of
other vital organs like the heart, kidney and liver. No dog
parent wants their son/daughter to go through that. So, what is
the solution? Well, here are some dental tips for your doggy
which will keep your dog’s teeth clean and healthy –
Brush their teeth as often as you can –
Dentists recommend brushing their teeth daily. It is
understandable how this may not be possible. But do make sure
that you brush your dog’s teeth as often as you can to prevent
a buildup of food and bacteria which may cause infections,
plaque or gum irritation.
Pick dry food over soft food – Soft food is
prone to sticking to their teeth and leading to decay. Meat,
fruits and vegetables are good whole food options which will
not only make your dog’s teeth stronger but also much easier to
Provide a soft chew toy for them – If you give
them a hard bone, they may injure their teeth. A soft chew
makes for a better alternative. It will clean away bits of food
from their mouth and is healthier for their teeth and gums.
Choose the right tooth paste – Never use your
toothpaste on your dog. It contains fluoride and is harmful for
your dogs. They also produce froth which the dog may swallow.
Pick a toothpaste i.e. specially formulated for your
four-legged friend, from a good pet store.
Visit the vet – Atleast, make an annual
appointment with the pet to have your dog’s teeth examined. You
will be preventing any forthcoming risk of bacterial infection
Chew bones made of starches are a strict no-no
– Chew bones made of corn, potato or rice flours are much more
stickier than the variants made from vegetables or dried meat.
So stay away from commercial chew bones whenever possible.
Look out for warning signs – If you notice bad
breath, excessive drooling, depression, misaligned teeth, bumps
within the mouth, red/swollen gums, a change in their regular
chewing habit, crust along their gum line – take your dog to
the vet. It may be sign of a dental problem.
Dogs need dental health care as much as humans. While their oral
hygiene may be better in comparison to humans, it cannot be
denied that the implication of bad oral hygiene for them is much
more dangerous. Follow the tips provided above to ensure your dog
maintains good dental hygiene.
Why Using Dog Dental Chews Improves Tooth Health
Chewing does the body good if you’re a dog. In fact,
well-constructed chew toys and appropriate dental snacks can
offer an extra line of defense for your pet’s oral health and
overall well being. These should not take the place
of brushing, which is the
most powerful tool you have to fight plaque and periodontal disease.
However, according to the American Animal Hospital
Association, gnawing on dog dental chews can effectively
reduce plaque in your dog’s mouth.
Keep in mind that not all chews are created equally. Here’s what
to consider when choosing chews to strengthen your dog’s
Offer a Safe Bone
You might assume domesticated dogs would enjoy chomping on real
bones, just like canines in the wild, but natural dried bones and
cow hooves could be dangerous. The American Veterinary Dental
College warns that these types of chews can cause
fractured teeth. Rawhide bones, then, offer a good alternative.
Raw Hide Bones, made from the
hides of cows or horses, let your dog have the full enjoyment of
chomping and tearing away at something, but there’s less risk of
injury with these manmade bones. Chewing on them helps clean
teeth, plus, they often include anti-tartar agents. If your dog
needs some encouragement try Dingo
Mini Bone that has hidden meat in the middle.
Rawhide bones come in a variety of types to match your pet’s
chewing preferences. For example, forceful chewers might do well
with Rawhide Natural Pressed Bones,
which are extremely dense and durable. However, if you are
looking for something that's a little bit more gentle
then Tuffy Jr's Bone can
be a good pick.
Make it Fun
For a chew to effectively help your dog stay healthy, it has to
be used – which means your pet has to love it. There are a wide
variety of products that turn playtime into teeth-strengthening
time. Petstages Dental Chew
Rope is a cotton rope with textures that massage
your dog’s gums and help remove tartar buildup. It’s also fun!
You can play tug with dogs as they chew on those tartar-fighting
Kong toys, which stand among dogs’ favorite playthings, provide
hours of chewing fun and teeth cleaning. The Kong Dental Stick is
perfect for a game of fetch or a wild chew session, but it’s also
designed with special ridges that reduce plaque and gently
Squeaky dog toys such as JW iSqueak Bone, which are
made from non-toxic rubber can also be a great choice. The
squeaky sound keeps the dog interested while the rubber cleans
the teeth and removes tartar.
The Nylabone Dental Dinosaur Dog
Chew is another example of a non-edible chew that
is fun to play with and effective at helping keep teeth healthy.
The dinosaur shape is contoured to reach the deep corners of your
dog’s mouth, targeting hard-to-remove plaque and tartar. The
material is specially designed to stand up to aggressive biting
and gnawing. Another poular dental chew is the TireBiter Bone that's
made from natural rubber and generates a flossing action with
every bite. As with all chew toys, you should supervise play with
these non-edible chews to be sure your dog doesn’t swallow or
choke on a piece that unexpectedly splinters off.
Feed Your Pet While Cleaning Teeth
Eating can actually help clean
teeth, but not eating just any kind of food. Choosing treats
that are specially formulated to reduce buildup can be a great
way to keep your dog healthy. Of course, you don’t want to
overfeed your dog and cause weight gain, which can be worse than
tartar buildup. Greenies Weight Management Dental
Treats allow you to help protect teeth while
managing calorie intake. These treats have been awarded the VOHC
Seal, a distinction that is given by the Veterinary Oral Health
Council (VOHC) to products that meet high standards for reducing animal
plaque or tartar. The organization is endorsed by the
American Veterinary Dental College and other international
organizations, and is a good source for recommendations on
dental-friendly chews and treats.
More on Dog Dental Health
Cat and Dog Dental
19 Products That Can Clean Cat
and Dog Teeth
My Dogs' Breath Smells! What
Should I Do?
This information is for informational
purposes only and is not meant as a substitute for the
professional advice of, or diagnosis or treatment by, your
veterinarian with respect to your pet. It has, however, been
verified by a licensed veterinarian for accuracy.