85% of dogs & cats over the age of three years old suffer from some degree of dental disease. Dental problems can lead to pain, discomfort, and can spread bacteria throughout the body, leading to serious health problems. Just as with humans, regular dental care is important to keeping them healthy.
Brushing their teeth can help stem the progress of dental disease. Below are tips for introducing your pets to proper tooth care:
- Introduce a brushing program to pets gradually. Avoid over-restraining your pets and keep brushing sessions short and positive. A cat or small dog can be held in your lap or placed on a counter top, facing away from you. Praise and reassure your pet throughout the process if they are being calm and quiet. Do not let them go if they are struggling.
- At first, dip a finger into beef bouillon for dogs and tuna water for cats. Rub the soaked finger gently over the pets mouth and teeth. Make the initial session short and positive.
- Gradually introduce gauze over the finger and gently scrub the teeth in a circular motion. You only need to brush the outer part of the teeth. There is no need to brush the inner surface.
- Once steps 1 though 3 have been sequenced into routine, add pet toothpaste and, ultimately, a toothbrush.