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Doggy Dental Care

July 15, 2016

Does your dog have dragon breath? Fido will probably never have winter-fresh breath, but his affectionate doggy kisses shouldn’t leave you gagging, either. In fact, bad doggy breath can often be indicative of dental problems. In this article from Arapahoe Animal Hospital, your Boulder, CO vet, serving Louisville and surrounding areas, a local vet discusses doggy dental care.


As noted above, bad breath is one of the most common signs of dental problems in dogs. Some other warning signs include swelling; visible tartar buildup; and excessive or bloody drool. Your furry friend may lose interest in chewing and playing if his teeth hurt, and he may not want his mouth touched. Dogs with dental issues also often take longer eating and/or prefer softer food. Grumpiness is another symptom: toothaches can definitely decrease your pet’s tail wags.

Common Problems

Dogs can develop many of the same dental issues as people, including cracked, broken, or misaligned teeth; infections; abscesses; and gum disease. Gum disease is actually one of the most common issues: by some estimates, over 80 percent of our canine friends have it! Although gum disease is painless and asymptomatic at first, it is very dangerous. This is because the infection can be carried to your pet’s major organs through his bloodstream, and can contribute to some very serious health problems, such as heart trouble.

Veterinary Care

Your furry buddy’s choppers should be checked by a vet at least once a year. If Fido has gunk built up on his teeth, he may need a good deep cleaning. Other problems are always handled individually, after a diagnosis has been made. Giving Fido a perfect smile isn’t a concern when it comes to doggy dental care. The focus is on issues that can affect dogs’ health or well-being.

Home Care

Brushing is the best way for you to keep Fido’s choppers healthy at home. Be sure to use only products made for pets! If your pup won’t sit still to have his teeth brushed, you can give him dental-formula kibble, treats, or chews, which are made to fight plaque and tartar. Last but not least, make sure that Fido always has fresh water and suitable chew toys. Ask your vet for specific advice.

Do you suspect that your pup may have dental issues? Call Arapahoe Animal Hospital, your Boulder, CO veterinary clinic, serving Louisville and surrounding areas, today!