Brushing your dog’s teeth regularly will reduce the accumulation of plaque and grime in his teeth. But brushing does not just help your dog’s teeth, it is also good for your dog’s gums, bones, and joints. You may have noticed that your dog’s teeth are clean but still have a lot of tartar build-up. When plaque build-up becomes a serious problem, it can cause cavities and gum disease, and eventually lead to organ failure. The best way to get rid of plaque build-up is by brushing.
If you are a first-time owner, brushing your dog’s teeth may be a bit daunting. So what’s first you get your dog used to the brush? First, take your dog home. Have your dog sit on the floor with you. Next, take a small amount of dog bristles, such as soft bobby pins or dental floss. Hold it close to your dog’s mouth, and make an ‘S’ with your fingers.
Start lightly brushing your dog’s teeth at first, making sure you get the tartar build-up out of the dog’s mouth. Your dog will probably push the brush back and bite you. Do not give in! Keep brushing. If your dog does not push the brush away, wait for him to become comfortable with the brushing process. Eventually, he will allow you to brush his teeth.
If you have used a brush with something other than your finger, now try this. Put your finger inside your dog’s mouth and gently brush. Your dog will push the brush away if he is irritated. If this does not work, try making an ‘S’ with your finger and brushing, then watch your dog’s reaction.
Once you have been able to get your dog’s teeth clean, there are several options. You can try using a finger-size amount of toothpaste, also some dogs prefer tongue toothpaste. Use a finger-sized amount of toothpaste and allow it to dry before you apply any conditioner. You should not apply toothpaste and then toothbrush again, because you will likely remove some of the natural tooth enamel.
Toothpaste is usually available from your veterinarian or pet store. Another option is to wet your dog’s teeth with a small amount of water, and then brush. Do not use too much water or you will spray water into your dog’s mouth. Also, avoid using just any toothbrush. You may be able to purchase special dog toothbrushes from your vet or pet store. Your dog may resist brushing his teeth, and you may have to give a bit of encouragement. You can also try ‘milking’ your dog. Use your fingers to massage your dog’s gums and teeth. Give him a massage for about 5-10 minutes, and then give him a treat.
Some toothpaste are not recommended for use, for several reasons. The first reason is that you are not effectively brushing your dog’s teeth. The second reason is that the toothpaste is not good for your dog’s teeth, and the third reason is that if you miss something, the toothpaste will weaken your dogs teeth. You can purchase toothpaste that is made for dogs.
Most dogs enjoy chewing toys. Your dog may also enjoy a toy. Try different types of toys, chew toys or stuffed toys. Your dog will enjoy certain types of toys, and he may enjoy a certain type of stuffed toy. If your dog likes toys, you may be able to get him a soft stuffed toy called a ‘Kong’. Kong toys are available at your local pet store and your vet.
Dog training treats can be used to reward your dog when he does something you want. Dog training treats can be used as rewards, or as incentives. If you use them as incentives, make sure you only give him the incentive when you want him to do something, otherwise, you are creating a bad habit. For example, if you want your dog to sit, reward him with a dog training treat when he does.
Be patient, as everything takes time. Your dog will eventually learn what you want him to do.
It may take some time, but you can make it an enjoyable experience for your dog. Once you have determined what you want your dog to know, you can begin training. Remember, it takes time to learn a new skill, and if you do not understand something, ask your vet for assistance.