Dental hygiene is very important for your pet. Everyday a layer of plaque (food material and bacteria) will coat their teeth. Within 2-3 days this will become thicker and form tartar.

Tartar eventually will lead to periodontal disease. This is when the gums and ligaments holding the teeth in place become diseases and start to loosen. The gums and tooth socket can become infected and ultimately the tooth can be lost. Dental disease has been linked to heart and kidney disease as well.

Plaque on cat’s teeth Tartar on cat’s teeth

Tartar on dog’s teeth

It is important to introduce teeth cleaning at an early age to your puppy and kitten. However, adult cat and dogs can also be taught to accept this as well. If your dog or cat has just had a dental with us this is an excellent time to introduce teeth cleaning. You should aim to clean their teeth at least daily or every other day.

Slowly introduce teeth cleaning. Start by just getting your pet used to having their lips touch and then opened. Then start placing finger or tooth brush on teeth only, slowly building up. Each time your pet gets a reward (treat) when they calmly sit still.

Book an appointment now with our veterinary nurses to learn how to introduce teeth cleaning to your pets!

There are many products available but the two main categories are:

  1. Mechanical action
    • Toothbrush
    • Finger brush
    • Chews and treats
    • Dry food
  2. Chemical action
    • Toothpastes
    • Mouthwash

Dogs

Most dogs can be taught to accept teeth cleaning- you can teach an old dog new tricks!

Products for dogs:

  • Dry food- dental diets have a larger kibble size
  • Dentisept toothpaste– an adhesive paste of chlorhexidine (reduces bacterial load on teeth)
  • Toothbrushes or fingerbrushes to use with enzymatic toothpastes
  • Chews- dentastixs are good for helping to clean teeth but are very high in calories. Good alternatives are: Fish 4 Dogs Sea Jerky or Skinny strips ,Pigs ears

Cats

Cats are not easy when it comes to trying to clean their teeth!

Products for cats:

  • Dry food- dental diets have a larger kibble size
  • Dentisept toothpaste– an adhesive paste of chlorhexidine (reduces bacterial load on teeth)

You Tube has many videos demonstrating tooth brushing, search “how to brush your pets teeth”