Proper dental care is important to the overall health of your dog, and improper dental care can lead to serious, even life-threatening disease. Just like people, dogs need to have their teeth brushed regularly - daily if possible. But most people never brush their dog's teeth because the dog hates it and puts up a big fight. So we want every dog owner to have the simple, easy-to-master steps for brushing a dog's teeth without engaging in a wrestling match. It begins with two simple goals:
- Take it slow. Introduce tooth brushing in small steps so that your dog doesn’t get overwhelmed and upset.
- Teach your dog that good things always happen when he gets his teeth brushed.
The first step is to get your dog accustomed to having your hands in his mouth. Once he's comfortable with you holding his muzzle and touching his teeth, you can introduce a tooth brush. But the secret to success is time and repetition. It may take a couple of months to get him there, but if you take it slow, repeat the baby steps every day, and always associate it with love and treats, you'll eventually have a dog that happily allows you to care for his teeth.
For information about choosing the right toothpaste, click here.
For some great detailed instructions and advice on the topic, read the ASPCA's article on Doggie Dental Care.