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How to Clean the Plaque off Your Dog’s Teeth

Posted by Lori Marsh on Mar 3rd 2022

How to Clean the Plaque off Your Dog’s Teeth

Dogs are known to be one of the best friends a person can have. Pets are always happy to see you and love spending time with you. But what many pet owners don't know is that dogs need dental care just like people do. Plague can build up on your dog's teeth over time, and if it is not cleaned off, it can lead to tooth decay, dental disease, and even loss of teeth.

But what's the best way to take care of your dogs' dental health? Don't worry. Barking Buddha has the answer for you.

Related: Pet’s With Superpowers: How disabled animals are helping disabled people.

A dog with clean, healthy teeth.

What is the Difference Between Plaque and Tartar?

Plaque is a soft, sticky film that forms on the teeth, and it is made up of bacteria, saliva, and food debris. Tartar is a hard, calcified buildup that forms on the teeth above and below the gum line. Tartar can only be removed with a professional cleaning from your veterinarian or dental hygienist. Furthermore, both plaque and tartar buildup can cause tooth loss and other dental diseases.

How Can I Tell if My Dog Has Plaque or Tartar?

Plaque is a soft, sticky film that forms on the teeth and is often accompanied by bad breath and discoloration of teeth. Tartar is a hard buildup that forms on the teeth above and below the dental gum line. Tartar is darker in color and harder to the touch. If you notice swollen gums or bleeding, contact your vet for professional cleaning, as this is the only way to remove tartar buildup.

If you can see a yellowish or brownish film on your dog's teeth, then they have plaque. If you can see any kind of black or dark brown material on your dog's teeth, then they have tartar.

How does dog plaque build up?

Dogs can build up plaque on their teeth in several ways. Plaque can form when bacteria, saliva, and food debris combine on the teeth. However, the bacteria in plaque produce acids that can wear down the enamel on the teeth and lead to tooth decay. Furthermore, this natural occurrence can still be dangerous as plaque can cause periodontal disease, gum disease, and even loss of teeth.

The best way to help keep your dog's mouth plaque free is by brushing their teeth regularly. You can use pet-friendly toothpaste or water additives. Another great way to keep your dog's mouth healthy and clean is to give your dog dental chews or toys.

A dog's mouth with a small bit of plaque.

Your dog's diet

Your dog's diet can have a significant effect on the buildup of plaque on its teeth. Dogs that eat a diet high in moisture are more likely to cause plaque buildup on your pet's teeth. If your dog is only eating wet or canned food, it is crucial to brush its teeth regularly to help remove any plaque that may have built up.

Related: Can dogs eat chocolate?

Keeping your dog on dry or kibble-style food can help reduce plaque and keep your dog's mouth healthy. Adding dog dental treats is another way that you can help keep your pet's teeth clean and healthy.

Make sure to add natural chews to your dog's daily life to help keep their teeth clean the easy way. Barking Buddha's Beef Cheek Chips are the perfect chew for many dogs. Buy a pack today for healthy teeth.

How to Brush Your Dog's Teeth

Keeping your dog's teeth brushed is an important thing you can do to help keep their mouth healthy. The plaque will build up over time on your dog's teeth, and if it is not cleaned off, it can lead to tooth decay, gum disease, periodontal disease, and even loss of teeth.

Brushing Your Dogs' Teeth

  1. Try to choose a time when your house is calm. It's best if it's just you and the dog without any other activity going on in the house.
  2. Buy your dog their own toothbrush and toothpaste. These specially made toothbrushes are available in stores or online. They are often longer, with a curved handle so that you can easily reach your dog's back teeth. Also, be sure that you get specific dog toothpaste that is approved by the veterinary oral health council.
  3. Pick the perfect spot. Select a place with good lighting so that you can see what you're doing. And your dog is comfortable. Many people choose the bathroom.
  4. Start puppies young. The best way to make this easy is to make it a habit. Start by just placing your finger on your dog's teeth. You can also buy special finger brushes.
  5. Rub the toothbrush against your dog's teeth. Touch the top and bottom teeth's front, side, and back teeth. Provide praise and rewards to your dog when they tolerate this step.
  6. Toothpaste time. While you don't want your dog to eat it like a treat, it is good to get them used to it first.

Initially, this might take a few tries to get your dog used to having its teeth brushed. But it can be well worth it to prevent expensive vet bills later in life.

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Can I Use Human Toothpaste On My Dog?

There are many different types of pet-safe toothpaste on the market. It is essential to use toothpaste specifically made for dogs, as human toothpaste can contain ingredients that are harmful to dogs. Furthermore, dog toothpaste is available in both paste and gel form. It typically comes in various flavors, such as chicken or beef, and it's the perfect addition to tooth brushing.

Prevent Plaque: Dog Tooth Wipes

Dental wipes are an easy way to help keep your dog's teeth clean. They can be purchased at most pet stores. Simply wipe the teeth with a cloth to remove plaque and bacteria. Dental wipes help to reduce bad breath, tartar buildup, and plaque.

A dog chewing on a bully stick for clean teeth.

The signs of Plaque on Dog Teeth

If you do not clean the plaque on your dog's teeth regularly, it can lead to many dental problems, including tooth decay, gum disease, and even loss of teeth. It is important to know the signs of plaque buildup so that you can take action and clean your dog's teeth before any severe damage occurs.

Some common signs that your dog's teeth may have too much plaque buildup include bad breath, red and swollen gums, bleeding gums, reluctance to eat hard foods or chew, and tooth decay. If you notice any of these signs, it is crucial to take your dog to the vet for a professional dental cleaning as soon as possible.

Maintaining Healthy Teeth and Gums in Dogs

One of the best ways to help keep your dog's teeth clean and healthy is to offer them natural dental treats or chews. Barking Buddha's Beef Cheek Chips are a great option, as they are made with 100% real beef. They also help to clean teeth and reduce plaque buildup.

Buy a bag of Barking Buddha’s Natural Beef Cheek Chips today!