National Pet Dental Health Month
February is National Pet Dental Health Month! Proper pet oral hygiene can help protect pets from serious health and dental problems, including periodontal disease, gum disease, and other related illnesses. Comment below some tips and trick you have for keeping your pet’s dental health in check!
What is Periodontal Disease?
Periodontal disease is when plaque accumulates on the tooth and irritates and inflames the gum line and surrounding areas.¹ It affects 80% of dogs and 70% of cats.
Symptoms of periodontal disease include:
- Bleeding or inflamed gums
- Discolored teeth
- Loose or missing teeth
- Bad breath
- Weight loss
- Bloody or “ropey” saliva
- Drop in appetite
- Favoring one side of the mouth when chewing
- Excessive drooling
- Blood in water bowl or on chew toys¹
How to Stay on Top of Your Pet’s Dental Health!
- Brush your pet’s teeth regularly
- Consider water additives for pets that don’t like teeth cleaning
- Use pet dental chews
- Provide pet toys that can help keep their teeth healthy
- Visit the vet for regular checkups and cleanings
Brush Your Pet’s Teeth Regularly
Don’t turn your nose to your dog’s bad breath! Brushing your pet’s teeth regularly is one of the most important steps in pet dental health. Regular brushing of your pet’s teeth is one of the most effective ways to maintain oral hygiene. Pet owners should use a toothbrush specifically designed for pets, which has softer bristles than human toothbrushes. To make brushing easier, you can use a pet toothpaste that comes in several flavors. If your pet does not like their teeth brushed, start by getting them used to having their mouth and teeth touched before starting regular brushing.
For pets that don’t like having their teeth brushed, bluestem and Zymox water additives can be used to help reduce plaque buildup on pet’s teeth. Bluestem water additives are created with coactiv+ and scientifically formulated to improve your pet’s breath while simultaneously reducing the accumulation of biotin and bacteria. This additive is easy to apply; just place two capfuls into your pet’s water bowl every day for the best results. Next, Zymox can be used for both cats and dogs because it contains no xylitol. It’s recommended for all pets in need of gentle, non-drying everyday oral care. This can help pet owners maintain pet dental health without having to brush their pet’s teeth every day if their pet doesn’t enjoy that process.
Pet Dental Chews
Furthermore, using pet dental chews is another important step in pet oral hygiene. Pet dental chews, like Benebone, are designed to reduce plaque build-up and freshen breath by gently scraping off tartar, plaque, and bacteria when your dog chews. In addition to pet dental chews, other products like Greenies and Nylabone for puppies can help keep your pet’s teeth clean. They are also designed to scrape off plaque and tartar build-up while providing a tasty treat.
Dental toys, like Mammoth, are also great for helping maintain your pet’s dental health. The chewing action helps stimulate their gums and remove some of the plaque from their teeth, similar to floss. Provide pet toys that are specifically designed to promote healthy chewing habits to naturally keep your pet’s teeth clean and gums healthy.
Schedule Teeth Cleanings with Your Vet
In addition to at-home pet dental care, it is important to schedule regular visits with your veterinarian for professional cleanings and checkups, similar to humans. During these vet visits, the pet’s teeth will be examined closely for signs of disease or infection and any signs of tartar or plaque will be professionally removed to prevent any serious illnesses from occurring or progressing further.
By following these simple guidelines during National Pet Dental Health Month – and all year long – pet owners can help protect their beloved furry friends from unnecessary health issues associated with poor oral hygiene. A healthy mouth can mean a longer and healthier life for your pet, so why wait? Happy National Pet Dental Health Month and happy brushing!
¹“Guilford-Jamestown Veterinary Hospital.” Vets in Greensboro NC: Greensboro Veterinarians and Animal Hospital, https://www.guilfordjamestownvet.com/site/blog-greensboro-vet/2020/08/13/periodontal-disease-dogs-symptoms-causes-treatment