“Doggie or kitty breath is just part of having a pet. All of them will get it at some point, right?” Wrong. What we have commonly referred to as doggie or kitty breath (and in some instances assumed it to be a fact of life) is actually the first stages of poor oral hygiene that should be addressed promptly.
Animals, like humans, should maintain bubble-gum pink gums, clean white teeth, and NO bad breath. What starts as doggie breath can easily lead to periodontal disease. Furthermore, research from the American Veterinary Dental Society shows that 80% of dogs and 70% of cats develop periodontal disease by the age of three due to a lack of routine care.
“But I take my guys in for regular cleanings and provide dental treats to help in between. What more can I do?”
Brush their teeth regularly. Yes, you heard me right. Brush your pet’s teeth!
Though somewhat of on odd concept at first, regularly (and by regularly I really mean daily) brushing your pets teeth will not only help them keep their teeth clean, can also reduce, if not eliminate, the need to have dental cleanings at your local vet.
How Do I Start?
Slowly. Start small and build over time until the entire mouth is being cleaned. Reward your pet with each successful cleaning. Use the time as a fun bonding experience between you and your pet. Eventually, your pet will come to accept, and even enjoy having their teeth brushed. Additionally, the bond between you and your pet will grow, your pet’s mouth will be healthier, and when your pet’s mouth is healthier, your wallet will be happier too.
Want to learn more about dental hygiene and maintaining an overall healthy lifestyle for your pet? go to www.pettech.net and search for a Pet Tech PetSaver class near you. Classes in Tallahassee, Florida are now forming! Or call 850-629-8390 to sign up for a class directly!
Here’s to brushing!
Virginia McMullen is a Certified Pet Tech Instructor, P.T.I.# 1928 and currently holding classes for the North Florida, South Georgia, and Eastern Alabama areas. E-mail or call for more information.