Oral Hygiene

Regularly brushing your pet’s teeth is the single most effective way to maintain oral health. Brushing prevents plaque (a bacterial film) from building up on the tooth surface.

It may take a while for your pet to get used to having his teeth brushed but be persistent. You're doing your pet a favour — and you may even end up having a closer relationship!

As a starting point, ask your veterinarian about arranging for your pet's teeth to be cleaned (oral hygiene procedure). During this process, the veterinarian will remove any built-up calculus (tartar) that can't be removed by brushing.

Here are some additional dental care tips:

  • Almost all dogs will eventually accept brushing. The key to success: be patient and gradual in your approach. Mainly brush the exterior of the “cheek teeth” located under the upper lip.
  • Brushing is important for cats, too! Most cats will allow their teeth to be brushed if you take a gradual and gentle approach. 

  • Pet-specific toothpaste comes in tempting flavours. Avoid human toothpastes since they contain abrasives and high-foaming detergents. Soft-bristle human brushes work well for dogs while the smaller proxabrushes are ideal for cats.

For more details about oral hygiene, please read "Preventing dental disease in your pet."