How often do you brush your dog’s or cat’s teeth? Effects of poor dental care doesn’t only affect humans. Poor dental care of your beloved pooch can not only mean painful toothache in your pets it can also lead to liver and heart problems.
Today marks the start of National Pet Month and we thought we would help to get your whole house dentally fit and healthy!
How many times a day do you brush your own teeth? Hopefully at least twice! Compare this with how many times a day you brush your pet’s teeth… Imagine the state your teeth would be in after a few months or even years without brushing!
There are signs similar to the ones you would experience and they could indicate a problem with your pet’s dental health –
• Bad breath
• Bleeding gums
• Discolouration of teeth
• Difficulty or reluctance to eat
• Pus and abscesses
• Broken teeth
• Excess salivation
If you notice any of these signs it’s important that these problems are dealt with as soon as possible to prevent further health issues.
Vets recommend that the most effective way to look after your dog’s teeth/cat’s teeth is to brush them. This is the best way to prevent plaque build-up and subsequent painful dental disease in your pet.
Of course, your pet may be reluctant to having their teeth brushed at first. It normally takes about 5-6 weeks for them to get used to brushing, but it will be worth it in the long run.
Start off by getting some toothpaste specially made for pets – never use toothpaste made for humans as these are not designed to be swallowed and are toxic to dogs!
For one week allow your pet to come to you and lick the paste off your finger. Once your pet is used to this, try gently rubbing the paste around their gums and when they are relaxed about it continue this method for 7-10 days.
The next step is to put some of the paste on to a pet toothbrush and let them lick it off. They might be suspicious of the brush at first so if they walk away be patient and try again the next day. After a few days you’ll find your pet will lick the paste off the brush. Allow them to do this for a few days before you attempt to put the brush in their mouths while they are licking off the paste.
After another week your pet should be coming to you to remind you that it’s time for brushing! When brushing your pet’s teeth you should aim to gently brush the outside surfaces of all the teeth to remove plaque.
It’s recommended you get your pet a health check every 6-12months. Dental disease is progressive; it won’t go away without help and will get worse. That is why taking preventative measure is so important, much like your own dental health.
Click here for more information on National Pet Month and pet advice…