I tell clients at work all the time to brush their dog's or cat's teeth. We discuss it in routine appointments, we discuss it after dental cleanings, and I talk about it with new puppy owners. I get decent interest from puppy owners and a lot of motivated owners after dental procedures but I've never once been able to say "my dog's gingivitis improved dramatically after only a month of brushing" or "my dog's teeth are sparkly white and she hasn't had a dental in 4 years."
|Bailey's teeth--staining, build-up, and gingivitis. I'm embarrassed.|
Bailey's teeth get nasty after a month if she doesn't get enough chewies (she has had two dentals and I almost scheduled her for another). I noticed how gross her teeth were today and decided I need to do what I say.
|Buzz's teeth--minor staining, minor build-up, and minor gingivitis.|
Buzz, on the other hand, has never had a dental and really has pretty great teeth. He gets chewies on pretty much the same schedule Bailey does but has dramatically less tartar build up.
I do have a dog toothbrush and toothpaste. I bought it at least two years ago and it hasn't ever touched a dog's mouth. I used it on Baby's teeth twice, if that. Today I brushed the teeth of both dogs after breakfast and before dinner. I don't expect it to remove the tartar build up... that's what bones are for, but I do expect it to help with the gingivitis.
I didn't teach my dogs to "help" me with teeth brushing. I have taught them to be okay with mouth handling though, and Bailey opens her mouth when I put my hands on it and say "open." Neither dog appreciated having the canines or incisors brushed very much, but were pretty good for the molars.
I know Crystal has started to brush Maisy's teeth. Does anyone else actually brush their pet's teeth? (I tried to do Rascal's and he told me that was not in his plans for today, or tomorrow, or ever, really.)
(It is really, really challenging to get good pictures, in focus, of dog teeth if I have to hold the lips back too. Maybe I'll recruit a helper tomorrow. The difference between Buzz and Bailey's teeth is pretty dramatic, especially on the canine teeth and premolars.)