Are your pooch's kisses starting to get a little stinky? Follow our tips on how to naturally keep that mouth smelling so fresh you'll be thinking 'bring on the kiss attack!'
We’ve all been there: kissed by a dog who we wish had freshened up their mouth beforehand. In that instant, we all become Lucy from Peanuts (‘Ugh, I’ve been kissed by a dog!’). While some pups are prone to be a little more on the stinky side—either due to their breed or because of an underlying health issue (more on that later), there are ways to help all pups keep their halitosis at bay. In this blog, we’re listing our bad dog breath remedies and tips on how to give your pup the freshest breath, after which everyone is going to be lining up to get a slobbering smooch from your pooch!
Some whole-food snacks for your pooch are not only tasty and healthy, but they help clean your dog’s teeth, resulting in fresh breath. Raw carrots, cucumbers, celery and apples are great low-calorie, nutrient-rich options whose crunchiness help clean your dog’s teeth as they munch away. Another option is to add some nontoxic fresh herbs, like chopped curly-leaf parsley, mint, spearmint or peppermint, to your dog’s regular food or treats. Not only are these herbs rich in vitamins, but the chlorophyll in them provides an odour-neutralising effect; also, their antibacterial and antimicrobial properties help remove bacteria and tartar that may be the source of the problem for your pup’s smelly breath. Be sure to feed these herbs fresh (don’t give your dog potent essential oils or mints made for humans!) and in small quantities to avoid tummy aches. Aim to feed them ruff-ly 1 teaspoon per 20 pounds/9 kilograms of your dog's weight--or one to two small leaves--a couple times a week.
Let’s Get Brushing
Some pups see the toothbrush (or finger toothbrush) come out and go running in the other direction, making pawrents feel hesitant to ever try being a dentist with them again. As ruff and strange as it may be for your dog in the beginning, especially if they aren’t used to having their teeth brushed since their puppy days, it is very important to gradually make brushing your pooch’s teeth part of their daily structure (or, at the minimum, happening 3 times a week). Brushing your pup’s teeth on a regular basis helps curb bad breath, remove plaque and prevent tartar accumulation, preventing the onset of gingivitis and periodontal (gum) disease, which can be painful and take years off your pooch’s life. It has been estimated that between 80-90 percent of dogs show some degree of periodontal disease by the age of two, so let’s keep those mouths clean! Try out some of these vegan dental products from Dogslife that will keep those canines pearly white.
Cleaning Those Chompers Can Be Fun!
Okay, so your dog won’t throw you a bone and cooperate during teeth brushing time. Do not despair—there are some fun ways for your pooch to take that tartar off themselves! Your pup will be so stimulated when gnawing at a toy, like this mango shaped one from Wild Thought, that they won’t even notice their plaque being rubbed away. For a durable ‘bone’ made out of bamboo fibre with anti-bacterial properties, head over to The Canine Treat Club for their ‘Forever Paws Bam-Bam-Bones’ that will make cleaning teeth a breeze for your four-legged friends. Looking for something your pup can eat? Your pooch will be in for a treat when it’s time to have their dental dog chew, like these ‘Mint & Parsley Tubes’ from Pawtato.
Underlying Health Problems
While it’s important to get rid of that stinky dog breath a.s.a.p. (so you can enjoy all those face licks your pup wants to give you), you’ll first want to rule out that the cause of it isn’t something more serious. Bad breath can be a warning sign for health issues such as diabetes, an oral or gut microbiome imbalance, or periodontal, heart, liver or kidney disease. Be sure to take your pooch for an annual exam with their veterinarian in which their bloodwork and mouth is checked out. If recommended by their vet, schedule a dental cleaning for your pooch to prevent their gingivitis from progressing into periodontal disease, which can precipitate the onset of the other previously mentioned diseases. Ensuring your dog’s mouth is clean not only makes your nose happy, but will make for a more comfortable, healthier pooch—and that's ultimately what all us pawrents want!
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