Did you know that you should be brushing your pet’s teeth daily? It’s true! In fact periodontal disease (or dental disease) is one of the most commonly diagnosed health problem in cats and dogs. So, if you think that Buddy’s breath is extra stinky, it’s probably time to start brushing. But, not all pets like it when you start sticking things inside their mouth. Here are some tips for success.
First off, be sure to buy a pet toothbrush and toothpaste. Not only do they have a variety of sizes (from brushes small enough for cats and big enough for Saint Bernards) but, the toothpastes come in lots of different flavours like chicken and fish, so your furry friend won’t mind brushing their teeth as much. As well the polishes are fluoride free, which is important as fluoride can make your pet sick. You can buy everything you need at the vets.
Now, getting down to brushing: the key is to start SLOW. Fluffy isn’t used to having fingers in their mouth, let alone a whole toothbrush. Next time you’re cuddling on the couch watching Netflix, start to play around with your pet’s mouth. Rub their cheeks and see if they will let you stick your fingers in their mouth. If they are really friendly you can try to rub their teeth and gums. If they’re not feeling up to it, take a break and try later. We don’t want anyone to get bitten.
After you have done this a bit (it may be 5 minutes or 5 days) if you’re feeling comfortable, put a bit of pet toothpaste on your finger or a finger brush and gently brush your pets teeth. Repeat this for the next few nights. Once Fido is super comfortable with the finger brush, you can move up to the full sized toothbrush! Apply a small amount of pet toothpaste on the bristles of the brush and gently brush in circular motions on your pets teeth. It’s easiest if you simply slide the brush between your pet’s cheek and your pet’s teeth instead of trying to pry open their mouth.
There you have it! Once you are done brushing be sure to give your pet a nice belly rub, they’ve earned it. If you would like to book an appointment to be shown these step in person, and to discuss other ways to keep your pet’s teeth clean or, if you have any questions give us a call at 780-705-2131.