When your dog “smiles” or even just opens his mouth, do you appreciate his pearly whites? Or do you run for cover from his toxic breath? Many of us joke about bad dental hygiene, but for a dog their dental health is critical to their overall health – Much like our own!
Dental Health is No Laughing Matter

Our mouths host thousands of bacteria at any given time. Did you know that your beloved dog can suffer from many of the same health issues as you can from bad dental health? It is true. 

Did you also know that 80% of dogs, by the age of three, have active dental disease despite showing few signs? Sadly, that is also true. 

Keep reading to learn more about your dog’s dental health and how to best protect it.

Bad Dental Health: What It Means

Dogs can suffer from many of the same dental diseases as their human guardians, including periodontal disease (inflammation and infection of the periodontium or the tissues surrounding the tooth) and gingivitis (inflammation of the gums).

Oral health is not just confined to the mouth. Any bacteria or germs lurking in your dog’s mouth can spread to other parts of their body through the bloodstream causing inflammation or worse.

Periodontal disease, if present, may lead to:

  • Tooth decay (typically less than 10% of all dental issues)
  • Bacterial plaque; an invisible biofilm (most common in dogs)
  • Tartar (thickened and mineralized plaque)
  • Fractured teeth 
  • Inflammation and infection (in the tissues and gums surrounding the tooth)

Gingivitis, when left untreated, spreads the infection further into the tooth socket and begins to break down and destroy the bone leading to potential tooth loss and even fractured jaws. 

Ensure Good Dental Health for Your Dog
Most K9 dental issues are irreversible once the first stage of periodontal disease, gingivitis, is passed. Therefore, regular prevention is so critical for your dog’s oral health and in turn, his overall physical health. 
To ensure good oral hygiene for your dog and proactively address both plaque and tartar, the following tips can help:
  • Regular annual check-ups with your veterinarian to stay on top of any potential issues. Work with them to also choose the best dental control products for your dog based on his needs and medical history. 
  • Daily tooth brushing (do not use human toothpaste, use one formulated for dogs so it is safe when they swallow it)
    • Depending on the size of your dog and their mouth, you can use:
      • A human toothbrush for large to giant dogs
      • A toothbrush or finger brush designed for smaller dogs
  • Real bones
    • Never feed cooked bones as they can splinter and hurt your dog’s mouth or more if swallowed
    • Only provide size-appropriate bones for your dog
    • Always supervise them when they are chewing and remove when done
  • Special dog chew toys (not rawhide)
  • Special dog treats
  • Specially formulated dental pet foods
  • Water additives
BEFORE You Purchase a Dog Dental Product

While there is a huge variety of dog dental products available, read all labels carefully to protect your dog! Make sure there is no alcohol or alcohol derivatives in the product! Many manufacturers use some form of alcohol because it’s the most effective. But any alcohol can poison dogs, particularly smaller ones. The smaller the dog, the greater the risk of alcohol poisoning. 

Refer to the entire infographic about the 7 Ingredients You Don’t Want in Your Pet’s Dental Products: including sugar substitutes, propylene glycol, artificial food colorings and more!

 Professional and SAFE Care for Your Best Friend When You Cannot Be There!

Davis, CA   ~   Woodland, CA    ~   Dixon, CA

Click here to get our free Info Packet AND a coupon for $25 off your first service!

Check out our Pet Care Services for your beloved pet and then reach out to us via email or by calling 530-219-3656 today.