5 Steps to Help Rid Your Dog of Bad Breath

I was recently greeted at the door by my overjoyed and animated pup, followed by an overabundance of dog kisses. The worst dog kisses anyone has ever experienced. I always knew my dog had bad breath but it had gotten out of control and that’s when I decided to take the necessary steps in treating her horrific halitosis. Here’s what I learned:

1. Obviously, just like in humans, a dog’s bad breath traditionally stems from a build up of plaque and bacteria. Remember not to rule out any other factors that might be at play, such as something wrong in the liver, kidneys or intestinal tract. It is recommended to see your dog’s veterinarian before moving forward with any at-home oral care treatment. If serious problems have been ruled out by your vet then it’s time to roll up your sleeves and get to work!

2. Open Wide: Take a look in your dog’s mouth for any strange or unusual looking objects (food, etc.) that may be lodged inside the mouth.

3. Time to Brush: Many experts on the matter suggest to brush your dog’s teeth once a day. To get started you’ll need some special dog toothpaste (don’t use human toothpaste-it will make your dog very sick!) and a pet toothbrush. You can get both of these things at your local pet supply store. While brushing, be sure to put priority on the upper teeth since this is where plaque build-up tends to accumulate first. Your dog may not like it to begin with but with persistence he/she will learn to accept the routine.

4. Pick the Right Toy: Most dogs already love to gnaw on anything and everything, but it’s important to give them toys that will help keep their teeth clean. I suggest using a rubber toy that you can rub some of your dog’s new toothpaste inside, such as a Kong toy. Not only will this help keep your dog’s teeth clean, but it will help them become more accustomed to the flavor of their new toothpaste. You can also opt to buy treats that are specifically made for dog’s with bad breath such as Greenies, although these products can get rather expensive.

5. Reevaluate you Dog Food: It’s imperative to combine the last 4 steps with a healthy and consist diet. Too much meat can cause bad breath so make sure your dog food contains high amounts of ingredients like rice and vegetables as well. Note: You should opt for a dog food that doesn’t contain too many ingredients. Less is more when it comes to dog food.

These 5 easy steps have been proven to significantly increase your dog’s oral hygiene and rid he or she of lingering bad breath but if you don’t see signs of improvement, it may be in your best interest to get a professional cleaning at your vet or your local pet store. I hope this works for you and your pup and good luck in your many adventures to come!  For more information, refer to http://pets.webmd.com/dogs/guide/bad-breath-dogs and for YOUR oral care questions, please visit us at www.cherry-creekdentist.com