Is it time to brush your dog’s teeth for the first time, and you don’t know how to do it?
Taking care of your pup’s dental hygiene can take a lot of time, especially if you are a beginner.
However, don’t worry, as we will convince you that this task is not as difficult as it sounds. We will show you exactly how to brush your dog’s teeth properly, prolong their life, and improve overall health.
Let’s take a look at some of our tips!
Table of Contents
Why Should You Brush Your Dog’s Teeth?
As a responsible dog parent, your dog’s dental health should come first.
Veterinarians constantly warn owners to brush dogs’ teeth. Yet, research in America shows that only 2 percent of dog parents do so!
Another scary stat is that about 80% of dogs in America have oral diseases before they are even three years old!
Neglecting oral hygiene in dogs has similar consequences as in humans. The only difference is in the size of our teeth.
Skipping tooth brushing leads to plaque formation. Retaining plaque for up to 24 hours leads to the formation of tartar. And you can’t remove tartar using just a toothbrush.
Soon, you will start to notice an unpleasant odor from your dog’s mouth. You should worry about this because tartar has a destructive effect on the tooth enamel. This leads to the gradual development of an infection that can spread to the gums.
Furthermore, there is an open possibility of impairing the health of vital organs if the infection is left to run wild in your dog’s mouth!
You may have heard that good health starts in our mouths. The same is true for your furry friend so let’s see what you can do to help them stay healthy for a long time!
Tip #1 – Create Ideal Conditions for Toothbrushing
The easiest way to build a habit of dental hygiene is to establish a toothbrushing routine.
We recommend brushing your dog’s teeth at least three times a week.
If your dog is incredibly receptive to it, you can do it as often as twice a day. You can do it together and make it a nice family routine!
With such regular intervals, you will reduce the possibility of plaque formation and further tooth decay.
Make sure to choose the right time for brushing. Let it be the period during the day when your dog is in a good mood.
However, brushing after physical activity is a bad idea. Your dog will be tired and will refuse to cooperate. To avoid this situation, revert to our advice above and brush your dog’s teeth during a similar period when you brush your teeth.
For example, 15 minutes before breakfast and 15 minutes before going to bed or after your dog’s last meal are all viable options.
Another essential thing is to select the proper place. Select an isolated room with a calm, soothing atmosphere. Various distractions such as running small children, food in the kitchen, or another pet can make your dog distracted and hyperactive.
If your dog agrees with it, choosing a bathroom sounds like the best room for both of you.
Once you establish a toothbrushing routine, it will become a part of your day, and you will not skip it. As you start to do it regularly, you will soon become an expert in brushing your dog’s teeth!
Tip #2 – Make It More Interesting
Dogs often feel upset when you need to brush their teeth. In the beginning, it will be a constant struggle. Nevertheless, stay patient, and you will see gradual progress.
We still understand that the beginning will be tough.
So, how can you start?
You can start by introducing toothpaste to your dog. First, let your dog taste a little pea-sized bit of the toothpaste that you choose.
Thus, the dog will gradually accept its taste. If you notice that the dog refuses it and doesn’t like how it feels, try another taste until you find the one that clicks.
Another tip is to do your best to make everything about brushing a positive experience. For example, while brushing, give your dog a treat once you finish one side. Then, reward your dog once again after you are done with everything.
This way, your dog will quickly accept the routine as something they enjoy rather than struggle with.
Tip #3 – Choose the Right Toothpaste
Toothpaste is also an important factor when you brush your dog’s teeth. If you choose a bad taste from the start, your dog will find it harder to accept brushing its teeth later down the road.
What can you do?
To avoid this, you can make sure that the aroma of the toothpaste is similar to the aroma of their favorite treat.
An equally important feature is the composition of the toothpaste. You must not use human paste!
It contains ingredients that can be toxic to your dog. For example, you’ve probably heard of the fluoride paste that humans use, which can be extremely harmful to a dog.
It is essential that the paste contains enzymes. Choosing the right product has many benefits. Some of them are:
- reduced possibility of plaque (in other words, there is less risk of tooth decay)
- maintenance of the optimal pH level of the mouth (favorable conditions to suppress the spread of bacteria)
- stronger gums
- a pleasant breath
If you are struggling to find proper toothpaste that is both healthy and tasty for your dog, try some of our tested recipes for homemade dog toothpaste!
Tip #4 – Brush Gently
Does blood appear during teeth brushing?
You may be a bit rough. To be more precise, you used an incorrect brushing technique.
We suggest you try our few steps towards more efficient brushing:
Step #1 – Show the toothbrush first.
This is a crucial step.
First, you need to show your dog their toothbrush. Once the dog spots it, they will understand what is going on. Let them smell it and play around with the brush for a while.
There shouldn’t be any surprises here!
Step #2 – Apply the toothpaste.
Determine the size of a rice bean as a dose for washing one jaw. Before applying, it is crucial that your dog likes the taste of the paste.
Apply the paste to the dog’s teeth with gentle movements, and be sure to clean the dog’s gums as well. While you are at it, pay attention to the color of the gums. A pink “bubble gum” color is a sign that everything is healthy and in place.
Step #3 – Start with the upper jaw.
Brush the front teeth gently in a circular motion. Then, slightly move to the back teeth.
After the last ones are cleaned, clean the inside of the teeth. Dedicate about 5 seconds to each tooth.
You can also give your dog rewards such as pets and encouraging words while brushing to make them feel safe and happy.
Step #4 – It’s time for the lower jaw.
Apply the same technique to the lower jaw. Cleaning the lower jaw may be more challenging, so stay persistent.
Try moving the dog’s head to get a better angle. You can also try brushing at a steeper angle, which can work well for some dog breeds.
Step #5 – Reward your dog!
It may sound contradictory to give treats to your dog while brushing their teeth.
However, treats can be a great way to get your dog to accept the brushing routine quickly. When you notice that the dog has acquired the habit of teeth brushing, slowly phase out the rewards over time.
Bonus Tip: As a reward, you can try dental treats. They are most often in the shape of sticks and are made of clinically proven ingredients. They may help prevent the appearance of plaque and tartar. It is entirely safe, and you can give them to your dog up to 2 times a day. Dental treats are great for maintaining oral hygiene, and your dog will appreciate them for their taste!
We hope we helped you realize the importance of brushing your dog’s teeth. Also, you have now learned a more efficient way to improve toothbrushing.
Now, as always, it’s your turn.
Which of the following tips did you like the most? Were the other tips also helpful?
Please write your thoughts or your own advice below in the comments – we would love to hear it!
And if you enjoyed this post, feel free to share it with your friends. Stay tuned and happy brushing!