Steph Barr
February 9th, 2023
5 min read

Brush up on pet dental care this month!

Brush up on pet dental care this month!

Taking care of our pets' dental health is just as important as taking care of our own. Poor dental hygiene can lead to painful oral health issues, and even more serious health problems such as heart disease and kidney disease. But don't worry, with a little patience and consistency, you can keep your pet's pearly whites in tip-top shape! We brush our teeth daily - but when was the last time you brushed your pet’s teeth?

Why is pet dental health so important?

Just like humans, our pets can develop tooth decay, gum disease, and other oral health problems if their teeth aren't properly taken care of. And let's not forget about bad breath! Keeping our pets’ teeth and gums healthy is important to prevent any uncomfortable or even serious health problems. When bacteria accumulates under the gum line, it can cause infections and inflammation, leading to plaque and tartar. These give bacteria more places to grow and multiply, and can result in bad breath and periodontal disease. This can also have far-reaching effects on your pet's overall health, from the liver and kidneys to the heart and lungs, and has even been linked to conditions like diabetes and certain cancers.

Brush your pet's teeth regularly

Brushing your pet's teeth may sound daunting, but with a little patience and consistency, it can become a breeze. All you need is a soft-bristled toothbrush and a pet-friendly toothpaste. Prevention of the most common oral disease in pets involves frequent removal of the plaque and tartar that forms on teeth that are not kept clean. Regularly brushing your pet’s teeth is the single most effective thing you can do to keep their teeth healthy.

Most pets might not be naturally willing to let you start brushing away at their teeth, so start by letting your pet lick a small amount of toothpaste from the brush, gradually increasing the amount of brushing as your pet becomes more comfortable with the process. If your pet already has visible tartar on the teeth this may be difficult to remove with a toothbrush,  so it would be best to arrange a check up with your Vet to work out the best course of treatment for your pet.

Dental chews and toys

Dental chews and toys are a great way to keep your pet's teeth clean and strong.These chews and toys are designed to scrape off plaque and tartar, and can also help freshen their breath. However it is important to note that most chews and treats contain lots of calories, so it’s best to use them sparingly. There are also a variety of dental sprays and gels on the market that can be used to improve your pet's oral hygiene and freshen their breath - ask your Vet for advice on the best preventative product for your pet.

Feed your pet a healthy diet

Making sure your pet is enjoying a nutritious and balanced diet can have wonderful benefits for their teeth and gums. It's also important to pay attention to the treats and snacks they enjoy. Opting for crunchy options instead of sticky treats and avoiding the temptation to give scraps from dinnertime will help keep those pearly whites shining!

Be aware of the signs of dental problems

Keeping a close eye on your pet's oral health is crucial for their comfort and overall well-being. There are a few tell-tale signs to look out for that may indicate dental problems, such as persistent bad breath, difficulty eating, dropping food out of their mouth, excessive drooling, weight loss, or even signs of discomfort such as rubbing their face or pawing at their mouth.

If you notice any of these warning signs, it's important to take action and schedule a visit with your vet right away. They can help determine the cause of the issue and provide the necessary treatment to help your pet feel better. Early detection and intervention can prevent more serious problems from developing and help ensure a healthy and happy smile.

Schedule regular dental checkups with your vet

Be sure to schedule regular dental checkups with your vet. They will be able to check for any signs of dental problems and provide professional cleaning if necessary. They may also recommend a dental diet or dental chews to keep your pet's teeth in tip-top shape.

In conclusion, taking care of your pet's dental health is just as vital as taking care of your own. There are many simple yet effective ways to keep your pet's teeth and gums in top shape, including regular dental check-ups, brushing their teeth, providing dental chews and toys, using dental sprays and gels, feeding them a nutritious diet, and being mindful of any signs of dental issues. By taking a proactive approach to your pet's oral health, you can help ensure they have a bright and healthy smile that lasts a lifetime! 

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