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February is Pet Dental Health Month! This is a very important topic. Dental issues are quite prevalent in our canine buddies. This isn’t surprising: after all, Fido doesn’t just use his mouth for eating, drinking, and barking, but also for playing, chewing, and taste-testing, well, everything. A Ada, MI vet offers some advice on doggy dental care in this article.
Gum disease is one of the most common issues we see in our canine friends. It affects the majority (roughly 80 percent) of pooches over the age of three. Because it has been linked to many serious health issues, this is a big concern. Other common doggy dental problems include abscesses, misalignments, and broken or chipped teeth.
Dogs can’t tell us their teeth hurt, but they do give some very clear signals. Some of the things to look for include drooling, swelling, tartar buildup, bleeding gums, shying, and a lack of interest in play. Fido may dribble food, take longer eating, or chew on one side of his mouth. Understandably, he may also be a bit sullen.
The best thing you can do to keep your four-legged friend’s teeth healthy is to brush them regularly. Use a pet toothpaste and a doggy toothbrush. However, you don’t want to start using these on day one. At first, just let your canine pal get used to having his teeth handled. Be sure to incorporate praise and treats, so Fido knows he’s being pampered, rather than punished.
Not all dogs will tolerate having their teeth brushed. You don’t want to force the issue. If your pup isn’t having it, ask your vet for tips on using other dental products. There are plenty of great ones to choose from, such as dental-formula kibble, treats, and chews; oral flakes; and dental rinses. Proper chew toys can also help. These can not only scrape off plaque and tartar, they also stimulate your furry buddy’s saliva glands, which will help rinse away food particles.
Another thing that is important is keeping Fido properly hydrated. This is also important for your canine companion’s overall health and well-being. Keep that water bowl clean and full!
Please do not hesitate to contact us with any questions or concerns about your furry bff’s health or care. As your local Ada, MI animal clinic, we are dedicated to offering great veterinary care.