Some people may say that dogs don’t care about how they look, but this is untrue. What others see as slobber and dirt on their dog’s face could be a sign of serious oral health problems. Dogs need their teeth cleaned to keep them healthy, and your dog may not be too keen on the idea. However, there are some easy ways to get your pup to enjoy getting clean!
These 9 tips will help you get started.
Use a Toothbrush and Dental Chew Toy
This is a great way for dogs of all sizes to do some cleaning up. Some pups might prefer using an actual brush, while others might like something softer that they can bite down on more easily. The dental chew toy should have bristles or nubs to really scrub away plaque buildup, so make sure you’re picking one with just the right amount of texture.
Feed Them Raw Bones
Not only are these great for dental hygiene, but raw bones can also be a fun way to give your dog a chewing challenge and alleviate boredom.
Use a Water Flosser or Toothpaste
If you’re looking for an extra professional clean, try using either of these methods to really get between those teeth. Your dog may need some time to adjust to the sensation, but some owners report having great success with these methods.
Brush or Wipe Your Dog's Teeth in Conjunction with Regular Nail Trims
This will help avoid any sudden jerks that could injure either of you while trying to get something in their mouth. You might even consider brushing or wiping before trimming because it could be a relaxing and enjoyable experience if your pet has never had its nails cut.
Brush Their Teeth Daily
It can be difficult to remember, but brushing your dog’s teeth every day is important for maintaining good oral health! They’ll also get used to the ritual much more easily if they have no bad memories associated with it.
If your dog is tough to brush, try using a treat or some of their favourite kibbles as an incentive. Dental care should never be forced, so if you’re not getting the response you were hoping for, don’t keep pushing it and try again tomorrow.
Brush Your Dog's Teeth Several Times a Day
Once you notice that it has become routine for them to sit still while you brush, try offering up another session in the middle of the day. The more often they get something in their mouth, the more likely they are to enjoy it.
Try Brushing or Wiping in the Bath
Most dogs will sit still and relax while they are getting their nails trimmed. This is a great opportunity for brushing since it will be less stressful if your pup is already relaxed. If you’re worried about dropping or bumping something in the water, try using a canine tooth wipe instead.
Use a Toothpaste Made Specifically for Dogs
Not all kinds of toothpaste are safe or healthy for pets to use, so be sure you’re using something made especially for them. You can find an entire line of pet dental products with flavours that your dog will love and ingredients that will help them stay clean!
Other Tips and Advice
Brush Them Before You Bathe Them
There are many ways that you can get your dog to enjoy the dental hygiene routine. You want to make sure you are not angry, yelling at them, or shocking them with a water bottle. You should find a treat that they really like and after they have their teeth cleaned, give it to them. You should also introduce one new thing at a time, such as toothpaste or brush. If you start trying too many things at once, they may become overwhelmed and refuse to cooperate.
Start on the Right Foot
A great many people recommend brushing a puppy’s teeth from an early age. This will be easier than trying to clean a dog’s teeth for the first time when older and have some set opinions on the matter.
Reward After Cleaning is Finished
It would help if you gave them a treat that they really like, something delicious such as peanut butter, for example. Please don’t give them the treat until they are done and finished with their teeth cleaning session.
Find a Dog Toothpaste That They Like
There are many varieties of toothpaste available, so it may take you some time to find one they like. You may want to experiment with different flavours until you find the one they favour most.
Don’t Use a Water Bottle After Four Months of Age
If you start using the water bottle at too young an age, they will become scared of it and never want to have their teeth cleaned again. Once they hit four months old, you can try giving them a little tap with a water bottle if that doesn’t bother them.
How do I introduce my dog to brushing?
You might want to start with a toothbrush and toothpaste. You can find products made specifically for dogs that come in fun flavours. If your dog is not enjoying the process, try again tomorrow.
What should I do if my dog won't stay still while I brush them?
If you’re struggling with getting your pup to stay still, use their favourite treat as an incentive or make a point of brushing them during a bath or when they get their nails trimmed. They will be more relaxed and less likely to bite you. They may also enjoy it more as this routine becomes normal for them to have their teeth brushed every day!
If you follow these tips, brushing your dog’s teeth should not be a difficult task. If you’ve never managed to get your pup to sit still for more than five seconds, don’t give up! Try one or two of these tricks, and hopefully, your dog will learn to enjoy their time spent with the toothbrush in their mouth!