Everyone who cares about their health and future sees a dentist regularly. Your pet’s teeth are wearing out much faster than human teeth. Moreover, dog's teeth are subject to infections and other dangerous diseases which can influence the whole organism.
From puppy or kitten to senior dogs and cats – every pet needs teeth examination to be made on regular basis. And you can do it by yourself!
Duration: 1-2 minutes
Frequency: 2-3 times per month
What to look for?
These are common symptoms of dental diseases:
- Bad breath
- Excessive drooling
- Cysts beneath the tongue
- Tumors on gums
- Loose teeth
- Discolored teeth, plaque and tartar (yellow-brown crust of tartar around the gumline)
- Receding gums
- Red gums
- Painful reaction on the gums being touched
How to examine your dog’s teeth
- Choose a comfortable spot with good lighting. A small penlight would be an asset.
- Smell your dog's breath.
- Put one hand over your dog’s nose and the other below.
- Gently pull the lips back to expose the front of your pet's teeth and gums.
- Gently pull back the lips on the side of your pet's teeth, ensuring you check to the back of the gums.
- Check both sides of the mouth for the signs and symptoms listed above.
Tip: If your dog does now allow you to touch his lips or mouth, that can be caused by two reasons. First – he is not used to such manipulations. Then you should just calm down your pooch and give him a treat after the work is done. Second reason – it just hurts. You are advised to see a vet urgently.
How to prevent dental problems
Dog chews and toothpaste are the main aids to keep your pet’s teeth clean and healthy.
There are some tips to how to brush your dog’s teeth.
- Use a brush or wrap your finger in gauze and hold it at a 45-degree angle to the teeth.
- Using small, circular motions, work in one area of the dog’s mouth at a time.
- Be sure to lift the dog’s lip if necessary to reach the teeth.
- Since the most tartar builds up on the tooth surfaces that touch the cheek, concentrate there and finish up with a downward stroke on the teeth to remove tartar.
Your dog may not let you clean the backside of its teeth, but don’t worry about it because very little tartar builds up there.
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