Why Should You Clean Your Pet’s Teeth?
Pet teeth cleaning is so important because dental disease can begin early on in your dog or cat’s life. Did you know that by the age of three, most dogs and cats have some form of dental disease?
Early signs that all is not well with your pet’s oral health include bad breath, tartar build-up, and red swollen gums. If the disease progresses, bacteria can multiply and end up in the bloodstream. This can cause damage to the organs in the body. This is why having a good pet teeth cleaning routine is so important.
So What’s Causing My Pet’s Smelly Breath?
Pets have bacteria in their mouths, just as we do. When the bacteria mix with saliva and food debris in the mouth, plaque forms on the surface of the teeth. If you don’t clean your pet’s teeth regularly, plaque builds up, hardens, and becomes tartar which causes gum disease and rotten teeth.
Can My Veterinarian Not Just Clean My Pet’s Teeth?
If you don’t have a regular routine in place to clean your pet’s teeth, your dentist can do it as part of your pet’s annual check-up. However, dental cleaning at your vet’s office can be expensive. A cleaning procedure costs between $70 and $400 depending on what needs doing. If any teeth need to be extracted, it cost even more, not to mention your pet will need to be put under anaesthetic.
Pet Teeth Cleaning: What Should I Use?
Cleaning your pet’s teeth at home can prevent health problems and potentially expensive treatments and surgery at your vet’s office. So how often should you clean your pet’s teeth, and what should you use?
Do a quick search online and you’ll find lots of products you can use to brush your pet’s teeth. There are brushes with soft silicone bristles and microfibre finger brushes like the lintbells tooth cleaner.
If you’re confused about how to brush your pet’s teeth safely and effectively, ask your vet for advice. When it comes to how often you should spend on pet teeth cleaning, recommendations vary. Some experts recommend daily and some say twice each week is enough.
What about toothpaste? Well there are special pet toothpastes on the market that taste like beef, chicken, or fish. Don’t be tempted to use human toothpaste as some contain ingredients that are toxic to pets.
Dental chews and sticks
Dental chews and sticks allow your pet to clean their teeth while they’re having a tasty treat. They help reduce plaque build-up on the surface of the teeth. Just be sure to adjust your pet’s diet if you give them chews and sticks regularly so they don’t gain weight.
For more articles on oral health and the products that can help you achieve and maintain it, check out the rest of our blog.
Source: American Animal Hospital Association