How Important is Your Dog's Oral Hygiene?

Posted by Derek Vore on 4/30/2012

Your dog wont tell you if their teeth are feeling sore or sensitive. In fact, they could even become a more active chewer. Therefore, it's important to always look out for your dog's oral hygiene, rather than waiting for the worst.

Gum disease in dogs can be more harmful than you think. Besides causing persistent pain and even tooth loss, the bacteria that causes gum disease can spread via the bloodstream. This could lead to much more serious problems including heart disease and other serious illnesses. Quite often, if your dog has abnormally bad breathe, your dog may very likely have gum disease. If you think your dog is too young to be concerned with gum disease, think again. Without proper care, dogs can be strongly affected by as young as 3 years old.

So how can you help to prevent your dog from developing gum disease? Start by thoroughly brushing their teeth every day with a tooth brush and pet toothpaste. It's important that you use toothpaste specifically made for pets.

As far as a tooth brush is concerned, use a soft-bristled adult human tooth brush. This will work best for cleaning their teeth. The kind that slips over your fingertip has less effective bristles and could lead to getting your finger bitten.

Be very patient with your dog, as this is a new and possibly frightening experience for them. Take your time and make it a bonding experience. Follow up with lots of affection and praise so that your dog will associate positive feelings with future experiences. As a reward, give your dog a bone or chew that will help clean their teeth even more.

It may sound like a lot of work, but once you begin doing this, it'll become easier and easier to do. Make it a routine, every night when your dog lies on the couch to watch TV with you, pull the toothpaste and toothbrush out of the end-table, snuggle up with your pup, and give a good yummy brushing to keep them feeling good!