Dog dental care is often ignored by dog owners unless the dog develops a dental problem. Routine dental care can prevent dental problems. A dogs tooth should be brushed every day.
Like humans, dogs can develop dental problems including dog dental disease and infections due to a buildup of tartar and plaque on the teeth. Dog dental disease can cause pain, especially when chewing. Regular brushing removes the plaque that causes problems.
In addition to daily brushing, the dog’s teeth should be cleaned by a veterinarian at least once a year. The veterinarian can also check for dental problems during this appointment.
Many dogs resist allowing their teeth to be brushed. If a tooth brushing is started while the dog is a puppy, there is likely to be less resistance.
Some dog dental care products are designed specifically for dogs that resist teeth brushing. Finger brushes are small toothbrushes that fit on the dog owner’s finger. They often have soft, rubber projections instead of bristles.
If a dog resists the use of a finger brush, a warm washcloth can be used to wipe the dogs teeth. After the dog learns to relax when this is done, the dog owner may be able to start using a finger brush or Childs soft toothbrush.
Dog toothpaste can be found at many pet stores and through pet supply retailers on the Internet. Toothpastes for humans can make a dog ill.
Some dog foods and dog treats are marketed as being good for dogs teeth. Many of these food products are not proven to be effective. They should not be used as an alternative to proper dog dental care. Dental dog bones and some rope toys are designed to improve the dental health of dogs. A daily tooth brushing is still recommended if these products are used.
Older dogs often develop considerable wearing down of the teeth. This may not cause any problems as it is a natural occurrence. If it becomes problematic, a veterinarian may recommend treatment.