Brushing a dog's teeth isn’t always easy, especially if it clenches its jaw and resists with all its might, and shakes its head from side to side as if it’s trying to say NO! Even if you know it's good for him, even if you've chosen a delicious chicken-flavoured toothpaste, it's no fun.
Did you know that 80% of dogs over three years old have a dental disease? It’s therefore crucial to adopt good hygiene habits, and the sooner the better. If your four-year-old has never seen a toothbrush, it won't let you brush its teeth very easily (trust me!), but it's never too late to start. Others prefer to have scaling done by the vet, however this is an expensive procedure that prevention will help avoid. Tartar buildup can lead to a variety of health problems ranging from gingivitis to cardiovascular problems, not to mention discomfort, pain and bad breath.
Unfortunately, as they age, many dogs are forced to have several teeth removed, sometimes all of them, because they are rotten. Can you imagine your poor, toothless beast’s quality of life after that?
Here are some habits you can instill to help your dog maintain good oral health:
Regular teeth brushing
You guessed it - it's a must-have. We recommend brushing your pet's teeth every day, but if you do it every other day, that's a good start! The more you get your young dog used to it, the easier it will be. Choosing a toothpaste flavour (for animals) that it likes may also make your job easier.
A healthy diet
Sticking to a diet rich in nutrients and vitamins not only maintains your pet’s overall health, and it can also prevent oral disease. In addition, dry kibble and treats help to scale the teeth simply through the friction of chewing. And there’s a vegetarian option rich in calcium that we particularly like... As they say, a Green Paws a day keeps the veterinarian away!
Treats and toys
Carotts are an excellent treat low in calories that clean teeth and reduce tartar buildup. You can also get rubber toys that "brush" your dog's teeth, incognito, or treats designed especially for oral health. In fact, anything that activates salivation (as saliva has a base pH) helps reduce the acidity caused by bacteria, and therefore the risk of oral infection.