Staci
Staci is a writer living in Atlanta, Georgia. When not writing, she spends most of her time trying to keep up with her four rescue cats and Australian shepherd puppy.
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Health Learn About Dogs Raising a Dog

Dog Teeth

Staci
Aug 6 ·

If you’re not sure where to start when it comes to dog teeth cleaning, don’t worry. Many owners aren’t!

Some owners go through their dog’s whole life without considering the state of their teeth. However, it’s just like humans. If we neglected the health of our teeth for years, we’re likely to see a whole host of dental problems and need expensive treatment. Most of this could be prevented with good care.

It’s the same way with dogs. If we take the time to take care of their teeth, we’re saving them a lot of pain and discomfort. We’re also saving ourselves money down the line.

Baby Teeth

When your dog has their baby teeth, you don’t need to worry as much about taking good care of them. They’ll fall out!

At around four months of age, you’ll notice your puppy teething. This can be a bit uncomfortable for them, and you might notice they bite more than normal.

It’s important not to punish them for this. Instead, find ways they can relieve themselves. Frozen carrots as well as anything hard they can safely chew on is ideal.

Many people start giving their dogs rawhide at this age, but rawhide is very bad for dogs and not digestible. Instead, find safer chews.

Dog Teeth Cleaning – Adult Routine

Dog smile teeth

When all of a dog’s adult teeth are in, it’s time to make sure you start taking care of them.

Brushing

Dogs don’t need their teeth brushed twice a day, like humans. Every other day is usually fine for them.

You can buy a doggy toothbrush and toothpaste at any pet store.

Your dog may not like having their teeth brushed at first, and it may take time to build up to it being an easy task. For this reason, you might want to introduce it to them when they’re a puppy, even though those teeth will fall out. Gently touch them around the mouth with the brush and give them lots of praise and treats afterwards.

It will desensitize them to the process and let them know it’s a good thing.

For those dogs who are very averse to the toothbrush, you can also get dental wipes.

Dental Chews

There are also dental chews you can buy for your dog and give to them every now and again. The gnawing will keep the plaque scraped off their teeth, and your dog will get a tasty treat out of the bargain.

It’s important not to rely on this alone, but it sure does help.

Dog Teeth Cleaning – Professional Help

If you’ve fallen behind on dental care, or your dog is just older, they might need a professional cleaning from a veterinarian.

Usually, this will require your dog to be under anesthesia so they can get a proper clean done without worrying about the dog.

It’s good to do this every few years too, as your veterinarian will be able to spot problems that even you can’t.

Your dog’s mouth might be sore for a few days after the cleaning, so make sure to take it easy and give them wet food (or soak their dry kibble). This will help them recover.

What Happens If I Don’t Clean My Dog’s Teeth?

Dog teeth

If you don’t clean your dog’s teeth, they will likely decay and eventually have to be removed. Since dogs sometimes don’t show they’re in pain, it may be a while before you realize this is happening.

Signs of tooth decay in dogs can include:

  • Difficulty chewing their food
  • Loss of appetite entirely
  • Yellow or even brown teeth
  • Excessively bad breath
  • Yelping when they yawn, eat, or bark
  • Blood on their toys or chews

If you notice any of these symptoms, the best thing to do is contact your veterinarian. Don’t put it off out of embarrassment — many people fall behind, and the best thing you can do now is to get it fixed to make sure your dog isn’t in pain or discomfort.

Dog teeth cleaning is very important! It’s something overlooked in dog care, but it shouldn’t be. Taking care of your dog’s teeth can be invaluable to them for many years to come, and less regular professional cleaning means lower vet bills. Everyone wins when you brush your dog’s teeth on a regular basis and provide dental chews.

When it comes to dog teeth cleaning you are now fully covered. Keep it up!

WRITTEN BY
Staci
Staci is a writer living in Atlanta, Georgia. When not writing, she spends most of her time trying to keep up with her four rescue cats and Australian shepherd puppy.
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