Did you know that when you see your dog roll on the ground, lick their coat, or chew on their fur that they are actually attempting to keep themselves clean? Although our pups are pretty good about taking care of themselves, sometimes they need a little help from us to make sure they look their best. Aside from giving them baths, brushing their fur, and clipping their nails, we should also be brushing their teeth! I know it sounds weird, but if you couldn’t brush your own teeth would’t you want someone to lend a hand? Here is a helpful 4-step training process to help get your furry friend’s canines clean and healthy.
Start your training by placing a little dog toothpaste on your finger and letting your dog lick the paste from your hand. If you do this several days in a row, and follow it with a treat reward and praise, your dog will start to take to the routine.
Place a dab of the dog toothpaste on your pet’s large canine teeth in front. This will help your dog get used to having something placed against their teeth and gums. Try this step for several days, and again, follow it up with a treat and lots of praise.
Here is where you will introduce the toothbrush. Place some of the paste on the toothbrush and allow your pup to lick it. This will get them used to the texture, and of having the brush near their teeth and gums. Once again, make sure to reward and praise your dog, and repeat this step for several days.
In this final phase, you will actually be brushing your dog’s teeth. Gently pull back your pet’s lips and hold the brush at a 45 degree angle to the gum line. Brush the outside of each tooth, moving the toothbrush gently back and forth. Soothe your dog by talking to them in a soft voice and always follow a brushing session with a treat. Only brush a few teeth the first time, and gradually lengthen the session with each time until you are brushing all the teeth.
Not sure you want to take on brushing your dog’s teeth full-time? There are pet grooming services that will do this for you, including the folks at Natural Pawz in Cypress, TX or bigger national chains as well.
Ideally you will want to brush your pet’s teeth every day, but at least a few times per week. This routine will help kill bacteria on the surface of your dog’s teeth and leave their mouth fresh. Just a few minutes of dental care per day can go a long way toward preventing plaque buildup and periodontal disease… and this is true for your own teeth, too!
Has all this talk of brushing reminded you that it’s time for your next dental checkup? Contact the friendly, professional staff Fair Lakes Family Dentistry today!