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When you consider that, unlike humans, our beloved dogs have no hands or grasping appendages to reach out and grab things, it becomes clear just how important their mouths are to their overall wellbeing. The mouth of your dog is the tool of adventure for them, with which they explore and develop their understanding of the big wide world. That being the case, it is then of the utmost importance that we work to ensure our dogs have the best dog dental care they can have, to help deliver them a happy life with healthy dog gums and teeth at the forefront.
What seems like forgettable dog teeth cleaning tasks to apply to your their daily routine, can have a profound effect on ensuring premium dog dental care. Equally, small neglects in the relationship you have with your pooch could have some seriously negative drawbacks, when it comes to maximising their oral health as they go through life. It is important to adopt dog teeth cleaning and overall dog dental care from the start, and explore the do’s and don'ts of looking after your dog’s teeth and gums.
What Issues Threaten Dog Dental Care?
It may seem strange, but dogs are actually susceptible to all of the same common teeth and gum problems as humans. Plaque on dog’s teeth, for example, is just as big a nuisance! Part of being a dog is biting things, chewing things, and all round just using your mouth and teeth as often as possible….we don’t call the sharpest teeth in our set canine’s for nothing after all! Dog dental care related issues are in fact the most commonly diagnosed conditions in dogs over the age of 3.
Plaque On Dog’s Teeth
The most common issue that we and our four-legged friends face when it comes to oral health is the buildup of plaque, but what is plaque? Plaque is essentially a mineral compound that forms when food particles and saliva mix together to form a sticky deposit on teeth. Aside from fighting bad breath, it is one of the main reasons behind the typical human routine of brushing twice per day, because the first step to forming plaque is eating food. Since dog’s teeth are more often than not, hardly looked after, it’s easy to see how plaque buildup is more of an epidemic issue in dogs. Plaque, however, is a simple enough problem to deal with and there are many dog plaque removers out there. The real worry occurs though if plaque on dog’s teeth is left too long as it can become more of a risk to dog dental care.
Tartar on Dog’s Teeth
Tartar forms the next evolutionary stage for plaque - yes, plaque evolves. If plaque is left too long to form on the teeth, it can become exposed to yet more minerals and build up to the point where it becomes tartar. Tartar is a far bigger problem for your dog’s dental health because it is hard and is stuck fast to your dog’s teeth. Furthermore, the moment plaque becomes tartar, your dog’s tooth problem becomes a gum problem! Tartar, as a hard and stubborn substance, can do damage to the gums, making them bleed, redden and become inflamed, and the whole process can be very painful for your pooch. An unhealthy buildup of tartar is called gingivitis, and it can have a knock-on effect. Tartar is demonstrably more easy to get rid of than plaque, which is why as mentioned before, it is important to start early when it comes to dog dental care and dog teeth cleaning, otherwise, your furry companion could find themselves at the top of this slippery oral slope.
When Dog Dental Care Becomes Dog Health Care
As we established early on, the mouth of your dog is the window into their world and is an invaluable tool that helps them gain a lease on life, and this is meant in both a health and a behavioural sense. If tartar forms gingivitis, not only do the gums become weak and inflamed, but the bleeding also means that there are now open wounds inside your dog’s gums through which the bacteria in the mouth can enter the bloodstream. The mouth, as we know, is one of the most bacteria-ridden places in the body, and aside from keeping your dog's teeth firmly in place, the gums also form a wall of protection that keeps those bacteria from going anywhere but the mouth, where they are neutralised by enzymes. With the gums damaged by tartar, these bacteria can seep into the rest of the body, where they can damage your dogs health beyond the mouth.
Another problem can be appetite. Have you ever got a toothache and been off solid food for a while? When a dog has a buildup of tartar and damaged gums, they face the same problem, and the pain can put them off their food. Failure to eat enough has the potential to cause other health complications for your dog.
Chips And Breaks
Your dog is also at risk from a more obvious threat to teeth too! As we know, dog’s will have a go on almost anything with their teeth, and they aren't keeping their dog dental health in mind when they do so. That means that your dog’s teeth can easily experience chips and breaks when they bite off more than they can chew in the most literal of ways! Think of your dog’s teeth like knives in the kitchen, if you blunt them, they will gradually become less and less effective at doing their job. Equally, if your furry friend’s teeth get ground down, they will be less able to chew food and maximise their nutrition.
How to Care for Your Dog’s Teeth
The best thing to do to look after their teeth is keep their mouths busy and away from chewing on anything that can cause them damage! The best way to do this is to ensure they have chew toys which will focus their instinctual habit in a way that doesn't put their teeth at risk. You might even want to consider a dental stick or dog dental chews, as these can be fun for them to chomp on, and help support dog dental care too.
The more tricky thing to do relates to the idea of starting early, and this is dog teeth cleaning. As you can imagine, a dog is not quite as partial to waking up in the morning and brushing their teeth; brushing your dog’s teeth not only requires your intervention, but it can be a real chore. It is important to start early when your dog is a puppy, this way you can introduce them to the idea of teeth cleaning young and then they will provide less resistance as they grow up.
You can also benefit from rewarding them, for example, if you give your dog a treat after brushing their teeth, they will come to foster a positive association with brush time and will be easier to manage. People have often speculated how often you should brush your dog’s teeth, but it is commonly asserted that between 3 and 4 times a week should be fine. Enduring this process these 3 or 4 times per week can make all the difference in ensuring that your dog doesn’t develop plaque or tartar and the associated complications.
Dog Dental Supplements
If your dog is particularly uncomfortable with dog teeth cleaning, or even if they are not and you just want to enhance their dog dental care, supplements are a great choice. A balanced diet and teeth cleaning techniques for your dog can be well complemented by certain supplements that have been tailored to either support healthy dog gums and teeth or act as a dog plaque remover. The best supplements to use are naturally sourced as they use potent active ingredients that are most to the benefit of your dog’s teeth.