exactly how (and just how Often) come Brush a Dog’s Teeth

As specialized pet parents, we make that a point to take excellent care of our dogs. We spend time researching what to feed them with options like fresh, organic and human-grade dog food. Us take them come top-notch groomers. We buy them every the toys and also treats they might ever want. Yet when it concerns brushing a dog’s teeth—well, that may be a various story.

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According come znjke.com research, a sizable 61 percent the dog parental say they never ever brush your dog’s teeth. However routine dental treatment at house is critical to keeping your dog’s health. In fact, dental disease affects about 80% that dogs (Source: Packaged Facts: "Pet Oral treatment Services and Products in the U.S." 3rd Edition, 2018.).

Below, we define why you must brush her dog’s teeth and demonstrate just how to do it right.

Do I need to brush mine dog’s teeth?

Not only have the right to gum disease lead to pain and also discomfort because that dogs, yet it may likewise be a precursor to an ext serious health problems such as kidney, liver or love disease.

Dr. Milinda Lommer, Diplomate the the American Veterinary dental College, says you need to brush her dog’s this often. “As with human mouths, the number of bacteria in a dog"s mouth doubles every 6 to eight hours,” she says. “Therefore, it"s important to mitigate their numbers by mechanically removing as many bacteria as possible.”

How frequently should i brush my dog’s teeth?

While day-to-day brushing is ideal, Dr. Whitney Miller, DVM, MBA, DACVPM and also Head the Veterinary medicine at znjke.com, establish the difficulty this may current when you’re busy. While you have to aim to brush your dog’s this at least 1–2 times every week, girlfriend can additionally supplement with various other dental care measures. “Pets, as with people, should have actually some type of a daily dental routine,” claims Miller. “While brushing daily is ideal, you cansimplify that by providing a dentist treat, water additive or making use of a dental wipe top top days girlfriend can’t gain to brushing.”

How come brush her dog’s teeth

Brushing your dog’s this at home deserve to feel prefer a challenge at first. However these tips can aid to make the endure comfortable because that you and your pet.

1. Acquire the best dog tooth-brushing tools

When brushing your dog’s this at home, the first things you need are a pet-friendly toothbrush and also a pet-safe toothpaste. Since pets don’t know exactly how to spit out toothpaste, human toothpaste is not an ideal for pets. Toothpaste provided for human being mouths includes fluoride, which deserve to upset your dog’s stomach, and also may even contain xylitol, i m sorry is toxicity to dogs. Lommer recommends using products specifically designed and also formulated for dogs.

“Pet-safe toothpastes are various from human toothpastes in that they don"t have foaming agents, are safe to swallow and are flavored to appeal come pets,” she says. Flavors including poultry, beef, seafood and peanut butter will certainly make a pets happier to have actually their teeth brushed.

For smaller sized dogs, shot a pets toothbrush that fits ~ above the end of her finger—it can be much much easier to practice within your mouths. Bigger dogs respond well to bigger toothbrushes with a handle, together it have the right to be easier to with their ago teeth.

2. Try a check run

Once you have actually the right tools, it’s crucial to do what you deserve to to acquire your pet acquainted with the toothbrush. Prior to you effort to usage it, obtain your dog comfortable by frequently lifting up their lips and offering lock rewards for good behavior. Incorporate rubbing your finger or a dentist wipe follow me their gum line to obtain your dog used to having actually something in your mouth. The more comfortable your dog is with being handled, the much easier the tooth-brushing experience will be. As soon as they come to be familiar with the toothbrush, begin with quick brushing sessions and also gradually increase the time as they become an ext comfortable. Friend should be able to brush every their teeth in one sitting.

3. Acquire in a comfortable position

Most dogs will squirm and shot to get away as soon as you effort to brush their teeth. 38 percent of pets parents who don’t brush your pet’s this say it’s due to the fact that their dog won’t sit still because that the time necessary to brush. Lommer recommends placing your dog in a means that it’s simpler for you to host them in place.

“For small dogs, either wrap lock in a towel like a burato or sit beside them top top a couch. Climate wrap your elbow approximately their body and also bring castle close to your side to assist keep them still while you are working through their head,” Lommer says. When brushing a bigger dog’s teeth, sit beside them and wrap your arm roughly their head, supporting their chin. In this position, you have the right to use your hand to help move their mouth to best brush their teeth.

Never force a dog to continue to be if they room visibly uncomfortable or uncomfortable, due to the fact that this deserve to lead to an adverse associations v brushing, Lommer says. Instead, if your dog starts fidgeting as well much, permit them walk and shot again later. Lommer says that it’s an important to be mindful with exactly how you restrain or hold your dog. “...Proper restraint is important, together their attempts to evade often involve tossing the head around, and also neck injury might result,” she says.

4. Go for the gum line

Rather than opening her dog’s mouth every the way, Lommer proposal lifting your dog’s lip and also focusing on wherein their teeth satisfy the gum line.


While brushing towards the former of your dog’s mouth may be more acceptable to them, it’s ideal to focus your efforts on their ago teeth whereby plaque and tartar build up. “The outstanding ducts empty at the sides of the mouth onto the exterior surfaces the the upper back teeth, so starting there is best,” Lommer says. Target this area with small, circular movements when brushing your dog’s teeth.

Make certain to to win the ideal balance in between brushing also hard and also being too gentle. Lommer states that plenty of pet owner don’t scrub hard enough or spend sufficient time brushing to really eliminate plaque buildup. “Just choose our own mouths, the more time you spend, the much more effective plaque removed you"re accomplishing,” she says.

5. Continue the upkeep

While brushing at the very least a pair times per week is necessary to keeping your dog’s dental health, you deserve to supplement care in between brushings v dental treats or chews for dogs, water additives and also dental wipes. These treatments help reduce plaque buildup but aren’t enough on their very own to maintain your dog’s dental health, therefore you will still need a continual brushing routine.


How to make teeth-brushing easier

40 percent of pet parents who don’t brush your dog’s teeth neglect to do so without a reason. However, if the chore is made much easier for you and your dog, it’s certain to happen an ext often. Once it involves making dog tooth-brushing simpler for her dog, Lommer says to no underestimate the strength of praise. She says that praising your dog if you’re brushing their teeth deserve to go a long way in helping her dog feeling comfortable.

Another way you deserve to make the experience much less stressful is to choose the right time to carry out it. Brushing your dog’s this after playtime or mealtime once their energy is low might help. If you room still having trouble, bring your dog in because that a dental to brush at her veterinarian"s office or neighborhood znjke.com store.

Things to clock for once brushing her dog’s teeth

As you’re brushing her dog’s teeth, it’s a great opportunity to look for any signs of tooth pain, mouth injuries or basic discomfort the may imply a enlarge problem. “If a pet winces, cries or traction away as soon as a details area is touched, that"s a clear sign of pain, but most pet with oral pain are not demonstrative in any kind of way,” says Lommer.

If your pet shows any type of sign of pain or if you notification something abnormal in your dog’s mouth, it’s important to gain them evaluated by your continuous veterinarian. “Even teeth that look OK native the exterior can be abscessed, so X-rays space the only method to extensively assess a pet"s dental health,” claims Lommer.

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Dr. Miller claims that it might be time to take your dog to your veterinarian if you notice the following:

Excessively red gums
Bleeding gums
Excessive drooling
Difficulty or pain as soon as chewing food
Damaged or chipped teeth Worse than usual breath (which may indicate a dental abscess or tooth root)

If you have any kind of questions around brushing her dog’s teeth, visit your neighborhood znjke.com, wherein you can likewise sign up for dog dentist service. Or, uncover all the right teeth-brushing devices for her dog in ~ znjke.com.