Majority of the pet owners do not recognise the importance of taking care of a pet’s teeth. Lack of proper dental care develops problems like periodontal diseases, cavities, abscesses, rotting teeth etc. Regular brushing of teeth is one of the most important steps for preventing dental problems. Brushing removes the daily accumulation of plaque from the teeth. According to American Veterinary Dental Society (AVDS), 80% of the dogs show signs of oral diseases by age of 3 years. Gum diseases, if untreated, can lead to pain and loss of teeth. Here are a few tips to keep your dog’s teeth healthy:
- Puppies should be trained with patience to accept brushing their teeth. This exercise should be followed by petting, food treats or playtime.
- Select an appropriate pet toothbrush. It should be extremely soft. The ideal dog toothbrush should have a long handle, angled head and very soft bristles. You can also use plain gauze wrapped around your finger or a fingertip brush.
- Pick appropriate toothpaste designed especially for dogs. The best toothpaste is that which contains enzymes that help in dissolution of plaque and do not need to be rinsed. Human toothpaste should not be used.
- Move the brush in an oval pattern, covering three to four teeth at a time. Outer surfaces of the upper teeth should be given utmost attention.
- Brush him regularly.
- Give him lots of soft chew toys and chew rope to keep his teeth clean.
Dr. Praveen Singh (Nepal) and Dr. Sheetal Kazi Shrestha (Nepal)