Dog breath

Posted on: 10 October 2019 by 50connect editorial

Smelly breath from your dog or cat can be unpleasant but rather than wafting the whiff consider what is causing it and take steps to look after their teeth.

Dog breath

Dog breath is more than a joke

More than two-thirds of dogs and cats show signs of oral disease by age three. Periodontal disease can lead to increased risk of heart, liver and kidney disease.

"Just as the public has come to realize that their own oral health is linked to their overall health, veterinarians want them to understand that dental health care is essential to maintaining the overall health and well being of the family pet," said Dr Bonnie V Beaver, D.V.M., President of the American Veterinary Medical Association. "Bacteria, combined with saliva and food debris between the tooth and gum, can cause plaque formulations on the tooth, which turns to tartar. If not removed from the teeth, pockets of infection may appear along the gum line, separating the teeth from the gum. If untreated periodontitis can lead to tooth loss and the infection caused by the disease may enter the bloodstream, potentially infecting major organs," Dr. Beaver explained.

A simple three-step program can keep your pet healthy and you smiling:

Step 1

Visit your vet for a complete check-up:

Your pet can't tell you if he has a toothache but your veterinarian can.

Your vet can determine if tartar build up has started and the appropriate course of treatment what treatment.

Step 2

Start a pet dental care routine at home:

Begin brushing your pet's teeth at home. It is best start them on routine brushing programs early but adult animals can be taught to tolerate brushing.

Use a specially designed pet toothbrush or soft gauze.

There are specially formulated toothpastes for pets. Toothpaste for humans may upset the pet's stomach.

Step 3

Continue regular veterinary check ups:

Discuss your pet's dental care and diet with your vet.

Watch for warning signs of dental disease such as bad breath, a change in eating or chewing habits, or depression between visits.

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