Just like people, pets need dental care. Although pets require less time and attention, as their teeth are incredibly durable, has, they can still suffer from periodontal disease, bad breath, and plaque. The best ways to handle your dog or cat’s dental care is to follow the four simple steps listed below:
Step 1 – Brush your pet’s teeth with a double-sided brush and only use specialized pet toothpaste, as fluoride is toxic to animals. Brush your pet’s teeth at a forty-five degree angle, and target each area for 30 to 60 seconds to best clean beneath the gums. This will break up developing bacteria and stop plaque from accumulating. It’s recommended that you ease your pet into this process, and reward them with a treat afterward. It is easier when you begin teaching them as a puppy or kitten.
Step 2 – Purchase the right food for your pet’s health. For dogs, hard and crunchy kibble will strengthen their teeth and gums while limiting the amount of food that gets stuck in their teeth. Soft food gets trapped in the gums and between teeth, causing bacteria to grow. For cats, the right food may be a kibble-based hard food, or it may be food that has an anti-tartar ingredient. Relying on too much soft food for either pet can be detrimental to their health.
Step 3 – Another easy item you can buy, for dogs in particular, is a chew toy or chewing snack that is designed to clean teeth and improve dental health. Sometimes offered as bones or other treats, these dental aids will help clean your dog’s teeth. You can also find dog friendly toys that clean and strengthen your pet’s teeth. There is no evidence that cat chew toys have the same effect, but it won’t hurt, either.
Step 4 – Regular veterinary checkups will prevent your pet from developing periodontal disease or at least catch it in the early stages. For any dental issues, our Country Creek veterinarian has answers to your questions and can advise on the best way to care for your pet’s teeth. Schedule an appointment immediately if your pet is experiencing these symptoms:
- Bad breath - Disinterest in eating- Extreme tooth discoloration and discomfort- Pawing at the mouth
No matter your pet’s dental issues, Country Creek Animal Hospital is here to diagnose and treat your pet with compassion. If your pet has missing or unhealthy looking teeth, visit our experienced veterinarians at Country Creek Animal Hospital in Allen, Texas. We are certified, experienced professionals who care for your pet as if it were our own.
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