Clean Teeth – Healthy Teeth
Dental issues are one of the most common reasons our dogs visit the vet. Combatting Plaque build-up and dental disease is something we all need to be aware of and something we can begin from the very first day your puppy or older dog comes into your life.
We train all our hounds to let us inspect their teeth, from very young we simply get them used to us having a quick look while we use the command ‘Teeth’ followed by praise or a treat, we then increase the amount of time we look in the mouth until eventually they are happy with us opening their mouth and inspecting all their teeth. OK sometimes they are not overly happy about the process but if you are persistent and persuasive, they soon come to trust that the process is not scary or painful and worth the praise or the treat. In our case, a dog needs to have their mouth inspected in the show ring so they need to be happy with not only us looking in their mouth but also other people (strangers), so looking at their teeth is something we practise at ring craft training, this comes in handy when they do need to visit the vet.
Healthy teeth are important for many reasons, dental disease does not only affect the teeth, pockets of bacteria trapped below the surface can cause infection and abscess, even enter your dogs blood stream causing damage way beyond just their mouth. It is important to be aware of your dogs dental health and there are simple steps we can all follow to avoid plaque build-up, dental disease and bad breath.
Feed a high quality, high meat content kibble, Low in Carbohydrate & Low Sugar. This is not only best for your dog’s teeth it is best for your dog full stop.
- Chew Toys
Chewing is good for you dogs dental hygiene. We use Buffalo Horns, Antlers & Roots, all keep our guys entertained, anything else never lasts longer that a couple of minutes! Chew toys not only remove soft tartare they are also a great way to reduce stress and quite often save your skirting boards and furniture!
- Healthy Treats
We totally believe in the benefits of healthy natural treats, treats that require crunching and chewing all remove soft tartare. We use a variety of dried treats: Ears (hairy and hairless), Deer, Rabbit, Lamb, Pig and Cow. Also, Chickens Feet and Necks, Ducks Feet and Necks, Bully Sticks (pizzles) Dried Tripe. For Training Treats we use either a high meat content biscuit/treat or we use 100% dried meat treats.
- Raw Bones
Feeding raw bones is controversial and we feel the positives outweigh the negatives. We stick to Beef Knuckle Joints as they don’t splinter and the hounds cannot break off big chunks to swallow. We like to give ours these raw bones at least once a month for a good teeth cleaning session, they will chew them for an hour or so then bones are disposed of.
- Raw Vegetables
Crunchy Raw Vegetables are kind to teeth, also remove soft plaque. Especially good for teething puppies. Carrots can be frozen we do this to not only alleviate teething pain but stop the little buggers from chewing all the other stuff we do not want them to chew!! It is a good idea to feed Vegetables after meals to give your dogs teeth a gentle clean.
- Natural Toothpaste and Teeth Cleaning
Coconut Oil is a natural Teeth Cleaner. It can be mixed with Bicarbonate of soda and applied using a traditional toothbrush or simply by using your finger covered with a cloth, both should be introduced slowly to get your puppy/dog used to you cleaning their teeth.
In some cases professional cleaning, descaling or extraction may be medically necessary and the only option. It is a good idea to keep an eye on your dog’s teeth throughout their life so you know if any changes occur and can take action before it becomes more serious.