We know how important it is to regularly brush our teeth so imagine what your pet's mouth would look like if we didn't do the same for them. Plaque hardens into calculus which in turn will lead to periodontal disease.
Of course, it's great if you can brush your pet's teeth every day, but even once or twice a week will make a difference. Remember to go slow, especially if you have a skittish animal or if your pet has never had his or her teeth brushed before.
You can start by simply stroking his cheeks and muzzle to get him used to having his mouth handled. Give plenty of praise and treats to make the experience as rewarding as possible. When your pet stops pulling away, you can progress to gently rubbing his gums with your finger or a finger brush. You'll eventually be able to move on to using a toothbrush. Depending on your pet, it can take as long as two months to get him comfortable enough to allow you to brush his teeth.
Check out our video on how to brush your pet's teeth, featuring Robbie and Chris.
If your pet hasn't had a wellness exam in a while or if you notice any teeth discoloration or bad breath, it's a good idea to schedule an appointment with one of our doctors before you start brushing his teeth. If there are any underlying dental issues, you'll want to address those first.
Remember, never use human toothpaste as they can be toxic to pets. Human toothbrushes aren't the best to use either because the bristles can be too hard. The shape also isn't well-designed for an animal's mouth. At Good Sam, we sell a variety of items to help you with your pet's dental hygiene from toothbrushes and flavored toothpastes to dental diets and oral rinses.
Stop by the clinic or give us a call with your questions. We're always happy to talk to you about your pet's oral health! In honor of National Dental Hygiene Month, we're also running a dental special through to the end of October. Make an appointment this month to save 15% on all our dental services.