As a new pet owner, you might be surprised to learn that your pets can get cavities as well, just like you can. It’s the same whether it’s your pet’s teeth or your own. Any carbohydrates that remain on their teeth from the food they eat comes into contact with bacteria and can cause cavities.
If you don’t know anything about pet dental care, then you need to learn asap. You don’t want to spend hundreds of dollars getting dental surgery or do some other expensive intervention, because you didn’t take proper care of your pet’s dental health. Keep reading for some pet dental hygiene tips.
Brush Their Teeth Several Times a Week
You can’t use your toothpaste on your pet’s teeth since it contains ingredients like xylitol and fluoride that might be harmful to their health. So make sure to purchase toothpaste specifically designed for your pet.
It will also make your job much easier when brushing your pet’s teeth because pet toothpaste comes in enticing flavors like peanut butter, beef, chicken, and more.
It will take time for you to train your pet to be alright with getting their teeth brushed, so don’t force it at first. Ideally, you will want to brush their teeth daily, but if they are particularly finicky, you could do it several times a week.
Of course, the more often you brush their teeth, the better their dental hygiene will be.
Over time, your pet will learn to tolerate the teeth cleanings, even if they don’t especially love it. Also, make sure to purchase pet-specific toothbrushes, which can reach all the tiny nooks and crevices in your pet’s mouth without too much straining on your part.
Try different toothpaste flavors and toothbrushes to see which suits your pet best and then establish a regular brushing schedule for them, so they get used to the full process.
Use Vet-Approved Dental Chew Toys and Treats
Many dental toys and treats on the market will espouse that they help your pet’s dental health, but in reality, they are just gimmicks.
That’s why it’s important to speak to your pet’s veterinarian so you can get proper feedback on which dental chew toys and treats are best for your pet’s teeth. Once you have some recommendations, then make sure to buy these toys and treats and use them on your pet regularly.
These dental chews or toys can clean your dog’s teeth while also stimulating their brain and preventing them from chewing on your slippers or favorite headphones.
You will notice that the more your pet chews on these treats, the shinier their teeth will get. The pet dental treats and chew toys will come in various shapes, sizes, and flavors. Make sure to test out several on your pet to see which one suits them best.
Don’t forget to supervise your pet when they are chewing on these treats or chews to prevent the risk of choking. Don’t leave them on their own while they have a dental chew or treat within reach.
Feed Them a Special Dental Diet
What kind of food you are eating matters a lot to your dental health and it’s the same for your pet as well. When you are eating too many sugary treats and not flossing your teeth properly after, you might notice your teeth getting yellow and developing cavities.
The same applies to your pet. That’s why you will want to feed them a special dental diet that ensures their pearly whites stay that way. Every pet will be different in this regard.
For example, with dogs, you will want to feed them a dry food dental diet, since the kibble is bigger making your dog chew more and rubbing off bits of plaque off their teeth. It also helps produce more saliva in their mouth which protects their teeth from cavities.
Speak to your veterinary care in Des Moines and make sure to follow their advice regarding your pet’s ideal dental diet.
Use Pet Mouthwash on Them
Don’t worry – your dog doesn’t need to learn how to start gargling mouthwash. You can add oral health rinse to their water bowl or apply some gel to their gums. This should ensure that their teeth are free of plaque and bacteria.
Attend Professional Vet Cleanings Once a Year
No matter how well you clean your pet’s teeth, your pet teeth are going to require a professional vet cleaning at least once a year, if not more often. Depending on how well you take care of your teeth, you could go to a professional cleaning once a year. But if you slack on your pet’s dental care, then you will want to go more often.
Speak to your vet about the necessary frequency. They will be able to give you a definite answer to that.
This will ensure that you don’t have to pay higher fees down the road to get your pet’s teeth removed or get surgery on your pet’s mouth.
Make Pet Dental Care a Priority
Prevention is much better than cure, in both pets and humans. If you are worried about your pet’s dental health and wish to do more about it, then follow the tips laid out above.
Just like for humans, pet dental care isn’t something you do once and forget about it. It requires daily and yearly care over time to ensure your pet’s teeth are healthy, shiny, and last their lifetime.
Browse through related articles on dental health care on our website and keep your pet safe and healthy.