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National Pet Dental Health Month Don't turn your nose to your pet's bad breath

80% of dogs and 70% of cats will have some form of dental disease before they turn three. That odor might signify a serious health risk, with the potential to damage not only your pet's teeth and gums but its internal organs as well. The good news is that studies have shown that a healthy mouth can add years to your pet’s life!

Brush it Off brushing dog's teeth

Brush it Off
Regularly brushing your pet’s teeth is the single most effective thing you can do to keep their teeth healthy between dental cleanings and may reduce the frequency or even eliminate the need for periodic dental cleaning by your veterinarian. Even if you can’t brush every day, developing a routine with your pet is one of the most effective ways of stopping plaque and tartar buildup. Introduce your pet to tooth brushing slowly using lots of praise. Start by introducing your finger into the mouth (dipping it in something tasty like broth or wet snacks helps!) Other supplemental products can be helpful, as well, such as water additives and dental sprays.

Power of Chew Dog chewing dental treat

Power of Chew
If you don’t brush your pet’s teeth every day, you’re not alone. It’s estimated that only 2% of dog owners brush their dog’s teeth on daily basis, despite recommendations from veterinarians across the US to do so. As a result, supplemental dental chews and toys that are proven effective in fighting plaque and controlling tartar become an important part of a pet’s daily routine. Keep in mind these important points when choosing a dental chew:
  • Select the right-sized dental chew for your pet based on body weight
  • Pick dental chews that match your pet’s chewing power
  • Only give dental chews to pets when they can be supervised
  • Throw away dental chews when they are too small to safely chew or begin to break apart
Dental chews allow you to give your pet a treat or toy that you can feel great about because they love the taste and chewing experience, and you’ll love knowing that you’re doing something beneficial for your pet’s oral health.

Regular Cleanings Vet inspecting cat's mouth

Regular Cleaning
While dental chews, toys, and supplies are not a replacement for teeth brushing and regular dental checkups with your pet’s veterinarian, utilizing products advocated by your vet can help prevent the buildup of plaque and tartar - particularly helpful for pets that do not tolerate brushing. Whatever routine you create, be sure to keep an eye on your pet’s teeth and gums. With regular cleanings plus a few minutes each day, you can help your pet stay healthier longer and have a better quality of life!

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