Dogs, just like humans, can get cavities. It really cannot be overemphasised just how important it is to keep your dog’s teeth clean. When you clean your dog’s mouth, her gums and her teeth, you are setting her up for a much healthier life
Where to begin
- This should be fun for your dog. Do not overly restrain your dog. Keep sessions short and positive. Be sure to praise your dog throughout the process.
- Get your dog used to the flavour and consistency of the toothpaste. If your dog does not lick the paste, you may need to try a different kind.
- Apply a small amount of paste to your finger and gently rub it on one of the large canine tooth. Be sure to praise your dog when he licks the paste.
- After your dog is used to the toothpaste and having something applied to his teeth, get him used to the toothbrush. We need to get him used to the bristles on a brush.
Tips to follow
- Never use human toothpaste. Dogs cannot spit and will eat the toothpaste. Thus, cleaning your dog’s teeth must be done with dog toothpaste.
- Clean your dog’s teeth a minimum of twice a week.
- Use either a toothbrush or a finger brush.
- Brush in circular motions much as you do your own teeth.
The more often you brush the better. Always aim for daily dental care for your dog. The hardest thing about home dental care for dogs is just getting started. Once you have done it for a while, it just becomes a part of your daily routine. If you cannot brush daily, brushing every other day will remove the plaque.
Other dental care items
Avoid feeding dogs table scraps or sweet treats because they can increase the build up of plaque and tartar and can lead to other health problems. Removal of plaque can be accomplished by using dental toys or rawhide chips. Always supervise your dog when he is chewing on a toy. There are some dental chews that are specifically designed to help control plaque and tartar build-up.
So, if you haven’t brushed your pooch’s teeth, pick up the toothbrush and get, set, go….
(Janhavi Daftary is a canine and feline groomer from Dog Care Grooming Academy, Singapore and she provides home grooming services for dogs and cats in Mumbai.)