Cleaning your dog’s teeth at home is more than just brushing their teeth. For some, even brushing their dog’s teeth can become a daunting task. But if you’re up to it, you can do the following steps to clean your dog’s teeth at home and save them from gum disease.
Get your dog a brushing kit made for them
If you plan on brushing your dog’s teeth, the first thing you must NOT do is to use the regular toothbrush that you use on yourself. You might think that a regular toothbrush would work and it might, but brushing your dog’s teeth is more challenging than it looks – but it can be done.
As a first step, get your dog a canine toothbrush. You can buy one from a dog shop or order one online. Canine toothbrushes are smaller with special bristles to reach into your dog’s teeth, gums, and mouth. Usually, canine toothbrushes can be worn on your finger so you can easily brush your dog’s teeth. You should also buy a toothpaste specifically made for them since human toothpaste can cause stomach upset among dogs.
If you don’t have a dog toothbrush and toothpaste yet, you can improvise with a piece of soft gauze – make sure that it’s clean – and a paste made from mixing a teaspoon of baking soda and water.
How to clean your dog’s teeth at home – a step by step process
Make sure your dog is used to the idea of brushing their teeth. Brushing your dog’s teeth for the first time is not an easy task. To make them warm up to the idea, massage your dog’s lips in a circular motion once or twice a day for at least 30 to 60 seconds.
Once they’re used to this, move on to massaging their teeth and gums with a clean, soft piece of gauze or the canine toothbrush you bought for them.
Introduce them to the taste of dog toothpaste or the baking soda paste you made. All you have to do is just follow the first step. This time, though, make sure that you add adequate amount of dog toothpaste or baking soda paste as your massage their teeth and gums.
It might take a while to get your dog used to the idea or taste of toothpaste, but it’s easier when you consistently do it to them.
Do the brushing technique right. Yes, there is a right way on how to brush your dog’s teeth. Here’s how:
Position the toothbrush at a 45-degree angle.
Clean your dog’s teeth in small, circular motions. Keep in mind not to brush your dog’s teeth too hard since it might hurt their gums. You should also be extra careful if your dog has any mouth disorders like swollen gums.
Perform a downward stroke to remove any tartar that is stuck in your dog’s teeth.
If your dog resists brushing their teeth, especially their inner teeth that touches their cheek, don’t fight them. Once your dog gets used to brushing, they’d be more open to you brushing their teeth which you can do twice or thrice a week.
Aside from brushing, you can keep your dog’s teeth healthy by giving them proper diet. Chew toys also help clean your dog’s teeth and makes their gums and teeth strong.