Brushing Your Dog’s Teeth

photoOh! You just got a blast of puppy breath and it smelled bad. Brushing your pup’s teeth is just as important for them as it is for us (not just to protect our noses). Cleaning your pup’s mouth is important, but it is also important to get your pup used to this chore. You don’t want them to fear the brush- or it may become something that you cannot keep up regularly.

Pups don’t get cavities, but they can get plaque, tartar and gum diseases the same as we do- which of course cause bad breath. Though you can simply take your pup to a dentist to get their teeth cleaned, this is something you as an owner need to consistently keep up with to. Regular brushing is necessary to keep your pup smiling with their pearly whites.

Motivate your pup

This can be difficult to accomplish if your pup is skittish about you touching around their mouth. You will have to get them used to you doing this through the course of time. Get your pup used to you brushing by flipping their lips up and using a clean, wet towel to scrub your pup’s teeth and gums. While you do this, talk to your pup calmly to help generate a positive response. Try not to force your pup in a rough manner- if they get anxious, stop and repeat after a minute. When you are done, give them a treat to reinforce the situation as positive. This process should be done daily to help familiarize your pup with the actual brushing process.

Cleaning their teeth

There are special toothpastes for our canine companions as their bodies are quite different from ours (not just the four legs). You need to make sure that you never use human toothpaste on a pup as the high fluoride content is toxic to their body. Choosing a brush that is right for your pup is just as important to them as it is to you. Finger brushes seem to be the most effective at accomplishing the process because of the easy maneuverability it allows. You simply apply the puppy toothpaste to the brush, lift your pup’s lips and start brushing- gently though at first. Be careful not to let your pup bite or try to eat the toothbrush. Remove the brush or finger if that is the situation, and try again from the start. Scrub for as long as you can before they become anxious; and when done- offer your pup a treat (positive motivation, remember!). Each day you should try to lengthen the amount of time you brush until you can fully accomplish the procedure (pat yourself on the back – you are your pup’s dentist).

The brushing is very important for your pup. Even if your pup isn’t excited about the situation at first, remember that it is necessary for their health. Don’t worry if it takes time to get your pup used to the brushing, their mouth is a sensitive area and even people don’t like someone messing with their mouth. Spend time with your pup and make them comfortable with the procedure. With a happy, healthy smile- pups can bring a lot of happiness to your home.

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