Daily tooth brushing is the gold standard for at-home dental care. Plaque is the sticky bacterial substance that constantly forms on the outside of teeth. Within 48 hours it hardens and turns into tartar that can only be removed with professional cleaning. The more tooth brushing you can do at home, the more long-term dental treatments you can prevent. It is important to use a toothpaste that is specifically made for pets. We recommend using CET enzymatic toothpaste. Poultry is the most popular flavor with pets and it typically makes a great reward during training. We also offer a variety of toothbrush options.
Toothbrush time can be a positive, rewarding process for your pet. Getting your pet used to brushing may take days or weeks. We recommend daily sessions that are rewarding and relatively brief. Once your pet is comfortable with one of the following steps and does not show hesitation you can move onto the next. First, practice lifting their lip to see their teeth and reward with praise. Next, use your finger to touch the outer surfaces of the teeth with toothpaste and reward with praise. You can introduce the toothbrush by placing a small amount of toothpaste on it for your pet to lick off. Finally, use the brush to gently scrub the outside surfaces of the teeth that face the cheek. Don’t forget to use petting and verbal praise as additional rewards to make tooth brushing a positive experience.
If you have any additional questions, or would like to discuss at-home dental care other than tooth brushing please contact us.