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Maintaining Your Dogs Oral Hygiene

Updated on March 20, 2011

Dogs Oral Hygiene Is Of Paramount Importance

 Your dogs oral hygiene is an important part of his good health. Dogs use their teeth for eating, chewing and picking up toys to play with, all of which can be have negative effects on a dogs oral hygiene. There are many pet products available that can be used to maintain your dogs oral hygiene that are safe and easy to use.

Poor oral hygiene for dogs can lead to abscessed or loose teeth, each of which may be very painful. Just like human teeth, a dog's teeth are prone to excess plaque and tartar that can cause gum disease and tooth decay. Too much plaque can cause bacterial infections and may lead to liver, heart, or kidney failure. These serious conditions can be prevented by cleaning or brushing your pet's teeth on a regular basis.

Experiment with different dog toothbrushes to find one that works for you.
Experiment with different dog toothbrushes to find one that works for you.

Dogs Oral Hygiene Should Be Performed Daily

 Most vets recommend brushing dog teeth on a daily basis, but this is not always possible for people who lead busy lives. You may also find that a dog will be more resistant to the whole process if subjected to daily brushings. Once or twice weekly cleanings will be sufficient enough to prevent bacteria and tartar build-up. Even though a puppy will lose its baby teeth, it's important to start brushing their teeth while they're young. Not only will this prevent periodontal and gum disease when they're older, it will also get them used having a dog tooth brush in their mouth.

Chewy dog treats can help remove some, but not all, plaque and tartar.
Chewy dog treats can help remove some, but not all, plaque and tartar.

Canine Toothpaste Is A Main Component Of Dogs Oral Hygiene

 Always use dog tooth paste for cleaning your pet's teeth. Human tooth paste contains fluoride, which is not safe for anyone to swallow.  You can find natural dog tooth paste at a vet office or any pet supply shop. This is also where you will find a dog toothbrush! There are bristle styles of brushes that have a small brush on one end a large brush on the other. Tooth brushes with long handles are good for reaching teeth at the back of the mouth.

You may find that your dog doesn't like having a brush in his mouth so there are rubber brushes that slip over your finger. This type of brush has small rubber nibs at one end for removing food debris. For toy breeds that have small mouths, even a finger can too big for brushing. A damp facecloth with some doggie tooth paste on it will work in a pinch.

The technique for brushing your pet's teeth is the same as brushing your own. Starting on one side at the back bottom, brush each tooth in a circular motion, paying close attention to the gum line and between teeth. Work your way to the front and then to the other side. Do the same thing for the top teeth.

It would be nice if all dogs liked brushing their teeth!
It would be nice if all dogs liked brushing their teeth!

Teeth Cleaning Can Maintain A Dogs Oral Hygiene

 Teeth cleaning at home is just one step to caring for your dogs oral hygiene. A full dental cleaning by a professional is recommended about every 12 to 18 months to ensure optimal teeth health. It can also due wonders for a dog with chronic bad breath!

You should always reward your dog with lots of praise and a treat to reinforce good behavior. You just never know; he might start looking forward to his next teeth cleaning!

Tips for Making Dog Teeth Cleaning a Pleasant Experience

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