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Pet Health: A Treat a Day Can Keep Tooth Decay at Bay

Dog Oral Hygiene

We used to not think too much about a dog’s oral hygiene. We knew their breath was a little … fragrant … but there wasn’t much we did about it.

Today, we realize that performing oral hygiene on our dogs is more than just about freshening breath. Gum disease and tooth decay can create bad bacteria that, if left untreated, can enter a dog’s bloodstream and cause organ damage — and even failure. Luckily, there are several natural ways that we can maintain pet health – and your dog's pearly whites.

Brushing Teeth Regularly

Using a canine toothbrush and specially formulated toothpaste (with a flavor your dog is sure to love!) can eliminate many dental problems before they start. Starting to brush your dog’s teeth as a puppy is an easy way to get him used to the process. But even old dogs can learn these new tricks if you start out slowly and use rewards. If a toothbrush is too intimidating, try a small rubber brush that fits on your finger. Focus on the back teeth first, where plaque is most likely to build up. While brushing every day may be too overwhelming, your dog will absolutely benefit from weekly or twice-weekly cleanings.

Giving Natural Treats

It seems too good to be true, but selecting a crunchy treat for your dog can be a natural tooth cleaner – by helping him produce saliva. Some treats even provide minerals that strengthen a dog’s teeth, while other dental chews encourage healthy chewing or have special grooves that help clean the surface of teeth. With flavors dogs love, it won’t even seem like work to keep teeth clean.

Using a Natural Water Additive

When brushing every day doesn’t seem doable, you know that your dog will be drinking water every day, right? Consider using a natural additive in your dog’s water bowl that helps clean teeth, freshen breath and reduce the buildup of plaque and tartar.

Giving Dry Dog Food

While all food will leave some residue behind after eating, wet dog food is more likely to stay on teeth, encouraging bacterial growth. Consider switching your dog to a dry-food diet. It may, along with the other suggestions provided here, improve your dog’s oral health.

Checking With Your Vet

The next time you bring your dog in for his checkup, make sure your vet looks at your pet’s teeth. He or she might be able to identify problems that you may have missed, giving you a jump start on improving oral health.

There are a myriad of healthy, natural oral hygiene products that will keep your pet healthy and happy for years to come — and will give you peace of mind knowing that you’re giving your pet items that are free from harmful chemicals. Oral hygiene is an important part of your pet’s well-being, and we are here to provide the products you need. Visit petnibbles.com to learn more.

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