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Why You Should Let Your Dog Brush His Own Teeth

Dog Toothbrush

Health is of utmost importance to an aged gentleman like myself, and a big component of that health is my oral health. Did you know that in humans periodontal disease has been connected with diabetes, heart disease, even cancer and Alzheimer’s? In dogs it has been studied and found to cause microscopic changes in the heart, liver, and kidneys. Not to mention the havoc it wreaks on the teeth, causing pain and all kinds of problems. Studies show that 80% of dogs have some stage of periodontal disease by age 3. This is serious stuff so I have my serious face on so you can understand the gravity of the situation.

That’s what makes teeth brushing so important, it helps keep the gums healthy which can hopefully keep periodontal disease at bay. My vet also regularly checks and occasionally cleans my teeth just to help maintain them.

Mom and Dad got some new tooth paste for me to try out- this one is Petrodex and tasted like chicken. Mmm….chicken.

Petrodex is made in the United States, which my parents like. A big thing to note is you want to make sure the toothpaste you use on your dog is not the same one you use yourself. Many human toothpastes contain xylitol which is deadly to dogs. Even if it doesn’t have xylitol it may have something else that is harmful to us so don’t risk it, get a toothpaste for dogs.

Serious face again, this is a serious post. Here I always thought teeth were fun as they help me chew those yummy treats mom and dad give me.

Here’s a shot of what the bottle looks like. As you can see my face is going from serious to anxious faster than green grass through a goose. I know this is important but I am not a fan of the process.

Well, at least it smells like chicken, I can handle that.

The toothbrush is ready, I don’t think I’m going to be able to get out of this.

Rumph sreh gumph grubba wumph. (Me trying to talk with brush in my mouth)

Total aside, doesn’t it drive you crazy when the dental hygienist asks you questions while she has equipment in your mouth? I wouldn’t know, they knock me out when the vet does my cleaning but my mom has told me about it.

Hey maybe if I make a game of this she’ll tire and give up!

Let me do it, mom.

Yes, this is much better. Sometimes I like to be in control- this is one such situation.

Gotta get those back molars!

Just about finished, gotta get those little teeth at the front now.

I hope you learned a valuable lesson about brushing your dog’s teeth today- let him or her do it. They’ll be much happier with you and less anxious. Of course you may want to follow after them to make sure they got all of the surfaces. We don’t brush my teeth as much as we should (they recommend daily), but it is a good practice to have and frankly, now that I know I can do it myself I rather enjoy it.

Gnaw gnaw gnaw and brush brush brush. Removing that nasty plaque and getting me some pearly whites!

Written by Ralph

My name’s Ralph. I’m 11 years-old, which makes me 65 in human years. I’ve been told that I’m an Australian Shepherd and Lab mix; all I know is I love herding the little people in my life but I’m also really laid back. My parents tell me I’m the best dog they’ve ever had in their family.  I’m not so sure they should be playing favorites but I’m okay with that.

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