We put in a lot of thought in keeping our dogs healthy and fit with quality food and exercise. Dogs can still develop problems like tartar and plaque buildup and gingivitis. But it’s not just bad breath and yellow teeth you have to worry about. As with humans, these canine dental problems can actually lead to life-threatening infections and issues including heart, liver, and kidney disease.
Start early with your dog as a puppy!
Grown dogs can learn to become comfortable with dog teeth cleaning, but make things easier for yourself by working with your dog as a puppy
How to brush your dogs teeth
Your dog might not take to tooth brushing at first, but hopefully, you can make it a reasonably pleasant experience for both of you. Try and choose a time when your dog has had a decent amount of exercise, so he’s more inclined to sit still for the procedure. Don’t overdo it the first few times. Start slowly and quit if your dog gets agitated, even if you don’t brush the whole mouth. You can
increase the time every day as he gets used to it. Also, make sure to speak soothingly and pleasantly during the brushing and reward your dog with a treat afterwards. Before too long, your dog should start looking forward to the event.
If not every other day stick to a target of doing it once a week where you brush your dog.
One of the best ways to insure optimum oral health is to provide the dog with a well-balanced, meat-based dog food. Meat assists in keeping the mouth environment healthy. Actively encouraging the dog to utilize chew treats that require some “exercising” of the teeth, such as is provided by compressed rawhide chewies, hard rubber or nylon chew toys, can assist in keeping the mouth structures vital.
There are many synthetic bones and chew toys that are specially designed to strengthen your dog’s gums and teeth. While i don’t particularly like the rawhide ones because of hygiene issues if you have one that your dog has been gnawing on lying around the house for a while. It is time to sanitize it by boiling it and then putting it in to your deep freezer to cool.Just make sure you’re providing safe objects for your dog to chew on. Hard objects can cause broken teeth.
Giving your dog a good mutton hollow marrow bone to chew on can help get rid of build up and keep teeth strong, Chicken bones are not advisable especially when they are cooked because they splinter easily and could hurt your dogs gums or gut.
Dental issues that plague your dogs
- Gingivitis: Inflammation of the gums
- Periodontists: Disease of the oral cavity that attacks the gums and bone and tissue around the teeth.
- Pyorrhea: Inflammation of the gums and tooth sockets, often leading to loosening of the teeth and accompanied by pus.
- Plaque: The first buildup of material adhering to tooth enamel. Composed of a mix of inter-cellular matrix of bacteria, salivary polymers, remnants of epithelial cells and white blood cells, it can cause caries, calculi buildup and periodontal disease.
- Calculus (Tartar): Calcium carbonate and calcium phosphate combined with organic material, deposited on the surface of the tooth.
When to see a veterinarian
Whether you brush your dog’s teeth or not, you should have a look inside his mouth every week or so. If you notice any of these signs of dental problems, then take your dog to the vet:
- Bad breath
- Change in eating or dog chewing habits
- Pawing at the face or mouth
- Excessive drooling
- Misaligned or missing teeth
- Discolored, broken, missing or crooked teeth
- Red, swollen, painful or bleeding gums
- Yellowish-brown tartar crust along the gum line
- Bumps or growths within the mouth
Cons of poor oral hygiene
The adverse effects of periodontal disease are when the toxins the bacteria secrete and the damage these toxins cause to delicate kidney, cardiac, and brain tissue. The toxins from periodontal disease are absorbed into the dog’s blood stream. As the kidneys, liver, and brain filter the blood, small infections occur causing permanent and at times fatal organ damage.
When my Prince was 13 years old i had to put him through surgery for wart removal and decided to get his teeth cleaned at the same time but to my dismay because i had not paid attention to his oral hygiene. The surgeon had to knock of 11 teeth 🙁
Prevention is better than cure after all. You might never know that your pet has a serious dental problem until it’s very advanced.