You clearly recognize the importance and benefits of having a mouth full of healthy teeth and gums, so why the lack of interest when it comes to pet’s dental health? A lack of regular and attentive care can result in serious health implications for your pet. Studies show that pets that don’t receive regular dental care can suffer from heart, kidney and liver problems.
Pets that struggle with poor dental health exhibit the following signs and symptoms:
- Bad breath
- Red, swollen and or bleeding gums
- Yellow-brown deposits like cement along the gum line or on the crowns
- Becoming a picky eater
- Eating on one side and dropping food
- Rubbing face on the ground, pawing at the mouth and drooling
- Personality change, irritability and depression
People often underestimate the prevention and maintenance steps required to maintain their pet’s oral health. Pets should have their teeth brushed on a regular basis.
For the best dental care results, try the following tips and tricks:
- Dental care is critical for your pet’s health. If you are not able to brush your dog’s teeth, there are other options when you’re in between vet visits. Consider using oral rinses that are formulated for dogs and/or cats.
- Never use human toothpaste because the foaming agents can pose health risks to pets.
- Do not give your pet any type of candy, ever! Like chocolate, sorbitol-sweetened candy is toxic to dogs. Regular candy is bad for your pet’s teeth (and yours!).
- Some toys, like nylon tennis balls, can erode the crowns of your dog’s teeth, so look for toys that provide some protection, like durable rubber toys.
- While many brands of dry pet food incorporate dental benefits, giving your pet special dental treats formulated to reduce tartar, plaque build-up and stains is another option to help prevent oral health problems. Many people give their dogs a bone or rawhide as a way to help keep their teeth clean. While these can help keep your pets’ teeth clean, they may also cause tooth fractures, or result in your pet ingesting bone shards. Keep an eye on your pets when they are chewing these products to ensure that they don’t choke on any pieces that may have broken off. Ask our Healthy Pet Care Specialists for assistance in selecting the right product and size of bone or chew for your pet.
- Contact your veterinarian if you note changes in your pet’s behaviour or health. The following usually indicates an issue that must be addressed by a professional: your pet stops eating, they have bad breath, they are drooling excessively, their gums are inflamed, or their teeth are visibly damaged or they’ve lost a tooth (or teeth). NOTE: Failure to obtain professional care for your pet’s dental problems can result in serious health problems.
Looking after pets’ teeth and gums is one key factor in keeping them healthy and happy for many years. You’ll find a wide variety of new and improved dental products for cats and dogs in your neighbourhood Global Pet Foods store. Our Healthy Pet Care Specialists are happy to provide assistance with managing your pets’ oral health.