Dental Care Tips for Your Canine Companion

Dental health issues affect many of our dogs, some quite seriously. Don’t let your canine companion fall victim to dental trouble! Here, your Somerville, MA vet tells you about some of the best ways to maintain Fido’s oral health.

Mouth Checkups

It’s important to keep a close eye on your dog’s dental health so that any concerns can be dealt with promptly. Sit down with your pooch in a quiet, well-lit area of the house once a week. Gently peel back the lips, exposing the teeth and gums—look for any redness, swelling, or inflammation, bleeding, cracked or misaligned teeth, brown-colored plaque build-up, and anything else that looks abnormal. Let your veterinary professional know right away if you see something amiss.

Brushing at Home

Were you aware that you can brush your dog’s teeth in the comfort of your own home? It’s the best way to keep Fido’s teeth and gums clean yourself! Pick up a pet toothbrush and a canine-formulated toothpaste at your local pet supply store. Start by simply massaging your dog’s gums and teeth a bit with your finger, getting him used to the sensation. Gradually introduce the paste until you’re able to brush around the whole mouth. Focus on your dog’s outer tooth surfaces, where plaque tends to build up the most.

Chew Toys

Chew toys provide your dog with hours of fun and entertainment. They’re also a great benefit to his dental health—chew toys actually help to scrape away loose plaque on the outer tooth surfaces, removing it before it’s allowed to harden into dangerous tartar. Plus, chew toys give your dog’s teeth and gums a healthy workout. Make sure to provide a rotating selection of chew toys for your dog; for him, it’s both fun and healthy!

Professional Cleanings

Don’t forget about professional dental cleanings at the vet’s office. They’re the absolute best way to make sure Fido’s teeth and gums stay clean and plaque-free, and professional cleanings get at the nooks and crannies that brushing at home simply can’t. Talk to your vet about setting up a dental cleaning procedure, especially if your pet hasn’t had one in the past.

Would you like a recommendation on a great canine toothpaste? Need to set up a dental cleaning or veterinary appointment to have your pet examined? Don’t delay. Call your Somerville, MA animal clinic today to get your dog the attention he needs.

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