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Why we should be brushing our dog’s teeth

No more dog-breath!

We all know why we need to brush our teeth – to eliminate bacteria, plaque build-up and stop tartar from forming. Did you know our dogs get plaque build-up on their teeth just like we do?

This might be shocking, but did you also know that gum disease (or periodontal disease) occurs five times more often in dogs than in people?

Doggy dentistry is relatively new, so chances are your dog may already have some signs of gum problems, but it’s not too late to improve their oral hygiene!

Brushing your dog’s teeth might seem like a silly activity if you’ve never done it before, but daily or even twice weekly brushing can make a drastic difference to your dog’s oral health, longevity, and general well-being!

Why we should brush our dog’s teeth

1. Remove plaque build-up

Although our dogs don’t treat themselves to sugary drinks and lollies (hopefully!), they still experience plaque and tartar build-up which can lead to gingivitis and gum disease – just like us!

The only way to stop plaque build-up in its tracks is with regular brushing, which scrubs away sticky plaque before it hardens and causes problems further down the track.

2.Prevent dental disease

Left untreated, doggy dental problems can become severe! Dental and gum infections, worsening over time, can enter your dog’s bloodstream and lead to deadly kidney disease, bone infections, and abscesses.

Just like our own regular brushing routine, taking care of your dog’s teeth prevents this by stopping the cycle at the first step.

3. Save money in the long-term

Investing in a doggy toothbrush and meat-flavoured dog toothpaste minimises vet bills long-term.
You don’t want to risk forking out thousands for invasive dental treatments and stressful operations for your pooch. Regular brushing minimises the hassle (for you and your furry friend) of serious future health issues.

4. Enjoy better breath!

We love our fur-babies, but we’d enjoy cuddling them a lot more if their breath didn’t smell so bad!
We don’t mind puppy breath, and brushing your dog’s teeth daily from a young age can prevent bad dog breath in adulthood.

How to brush your dog’s teeth

Brushing your dog’s teeth can be an awkward experience for you both, but start as soon as possible and it will become another part of your routine and get easier with time!

Here are some tips to get started and make brushing easy:

1. Find the right products

See your local vet or pet-care store for the latest doggy dental-care gadgets: from chicken-flavoured toothpaste to dog toothbrushes, there’s even minty chew-toys so your dog can clean his teeth while doing what he does best!

2. Choose the right time

If this is a new experience for your dog or they’re very young, it’s best to wait until they’ve had a lot of exercise before brushing their teeth.

A sleepy, de-stressed pup is much easier to handle than a hyperactive one! Always reward your dog with cuddles and playtime after brushing to build a positive association.

3. Introduce them gently

Checking your dog’s mouth every day ensures they are comfortable with you handling them in such a sensitive area.

Let your pooch sniff and handle the dog toothbrush to get used to how it feels and smells, the same goes for the toothpaste!

Allowing your pup to taste different toothpastes will help you see what they like best – this will make brushing their teeth much easier!

4. Patience and persistence

Take your time as you brush your pooch’s teeth, especially if it’s their first few times experiencing such a new sensation.

Brush a few teeth, starting with the easy-to-reach canines, then reward them for being so good! As it becomes a routine, you’ll see your dog relax and enjoy spending this quality time with you.

If you’re having trouble brushing your dog’s teeth, or feel uncomfortable doing so, see your local vet who can help provide the dental care your pooch needs!

Here at Nose to Tail, we can help you take care of your dog’s teeth with our range of chew-toys. Pop in store to see our range, or call us call on 09 488 2227 to book a groom!