5 Tips for Brushing Your Pet’s Teeth

Your pet can develop gum disease and tooth decay like you, so it’s very important to take care of their teeth properly. While many pet owners believe that their pets don’t need their teeth brushed, imagine what would happen if YOU skipped out on your oral hygiene routine altogether! Think bad breath and oral health issues. Brushing your pet’s teeth doesn’t have to be difficult. In fact, it can actually be a bonding experience for the both of you. Here are five tips to help make the entire process easier.

  1. Buy the Correct Pet-Friendly Supplies
  2. Using a spare toothbrush and your own toothpaste isn’t just wrong for your pet, it’s actually harmful, since human toothpaste contains ingredients that are toxic to animals! There are plenty of animal-friendly dental supplies available, including enzymatic toothpastes in flavors like peanut butter and beef that are safe to be ingested by your pet, specially-designed pet toothbrushes, and supplemental dental chew treats.

  3. Start Slowly & Have Patience
  4. Slowly introduce your pet to their new dental supplies. It’s important to work at your pet’s pace and not make the process overwhelming. Start by getting your pet used to having their mouth touched, and then dab your finger with pet-friendly toothpaste and run it over their teeth and gums. Over the course of a few weeks, introduce them to the toothbrush or finger brush and a regular oral care routine.

  5. Reward Your Pet & Be Positive
  6. Give your pet lots of praise and treats for their cooperation as they learn to get their teeth brushed. Some pets may find it scary or even threatening to have their mouths touched, so it is crucial to be understanding and “paw-sitive”. Never punish or force your pet.

  7. Be Consistent
  8. It’s best to brush your pet’s teeth daily, especially if they eat a processed diet. If you can’t brush their teeth daily, make sure to brush their teeth at least a few times a week. Moreover, make sure that your pet has plenty of safe chew toys and always has access to fresh water.

  9. Get Your Vet’s Opinion
  10. It’s important to take your pet to yearly visits with your vet so they can examine your pet’s teeth thoroughly. They may even suggest that you get your pet a professional dental cleaning if they notice any tartar buildup or gum inflammation.

Remember, it’s important for you to brush your teeth twice a day, floss at least once a day, and to come see us every six months to keep your own teeth clean and healthy. At Del Ray Dental Center, we offer services beyond routine cleanings and examinations should you need it. Make sure to check out our new patient specials. Contact us to schedule an appointment today and see what we have to offer!

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