Brushing Your Pet’s teeth is one of the most common steps that we missed in pet care for maintaining dental hygiene. The Pet owners regularly brush coats, trim nails, and give baths as required, but not everyone skips brushing their pet’s teeth. By the age of three, it is found that more than 50% of cats have gum disease, if left untreated the results can be painful and could result in tooth loss. Below are some useful tips for your pet’s healthier teeth.
Just like humans, our pets too need help in keeping their teeth free of tartar and plaque. If Left untreated the plaque turns into tartar increasing the risk of bad breath, tooth decay, gum disease, and sometimes infection. Brushing the dog’s teeth times a week can make a significant improvement in their oral health.
Type of Toothpaste and Toothbrush to Use
We recommend using products that are specifically designed for your pet. If you are not sure of what toothbrush or toothpaste to buy, refer to your vet’s recommendation.
Never use human toothpaste as it is not safe for pets as it contains high levels of sodium and xylitol which can sometimes be toxic for animals. We don’t even recommend using baking soda formulas as it has high alkaline content which can upset the stomach and digestive symptoms of pets.
Preparing Your Pet
If you want to begin brushing the dog’s teeth, it is important to remember that it will take time. Choose a quiet time to start and ensure your pet is relaxed and in the mood for some activity. Hold your pet close, so you can comfortably handle the pet’s mouth and teeth.
Start by rubbing the finger or soft cloth over the surface of their teeth, in an easy back-and-forth motion massaging their gums with light pressure. This may take several attempts for your pet to become used to the sensation. If the pet becomes uncomfortable or struggles against you, it’s better to take a break and try again after some time. Give immediate praise and rewards for good behavior and acceptance.
How to Brush the Pet’s Teeth
You will have to introduce your pet to their toothbrush. Apply some toothpaste to attract your dog to their toothbrush. Let your pet sniff it, rub it along their face and some around their lips. Once they have accepted their toothbrush, use your finger and raise their upper lip and brush their teeth in a circular motion.
Focus on the outside surfaces of teeth and then gently along the gumline. Initially, some bleeding may occur, but if ongoing bleeding occurs then it is possible that you may be brushing too aggressively, or there may be a chance of gum disease. Speak with your vet for advice in this case.
During brushing your pet’s teeth, give praise and encouragement. Brushing your pet teeth for at least 30 seconds on each side is recommended. Always stops at that moment if your pet becomes agitated during brushing and try again later.
Call us today to book an appointment for more details on brushing your pet teeth.