Talk to your friends about cleaning your dogs teeth you may find yourself being laughed at – cleaning dogs teeth … really!?  The fact is that like us, dogs can get bad teeth which can cause health problems ranging from bad breath to gum disease to heart problems.

Bacteria can build up in your dogs mouth, as it does with humans.  Without regular brushing this can result in hard tartar that can only be removed by scraping with a scaler.  When you take your dog for their annual examination make certain the vet does a dental checkup.  Don’t be surprised if a dental scaling is recommended.

Regular teeth cleaning can reduce the frequency of dental scalings (which by the way require general anesthesia).  If your dog isn’t used to having their teeth cleaned you may initially have a challenge on your hands, but in the long run it will be worth the effort.

You brush dogs teeth just as you do your own, using a dog toothbrush which either looks like a human toothbrush or is a rubber sleeve that fits over your finger and has rubber bristles on the end.  The toothpaste you use needs to be made specially for dogs (human toothpaste contains ingredients that are not good for your dog).  As you clean your dogs teeth go round every tooth as well as around the gums.  During the first couple of cleanings you may not get to every tooth as your dog will be getting used to the feeling of the brush.  Be persistant and eventually you will
be able to clean all their teeth, brushing helping to reduce the risk of dental disease.