It is crucial to ensure that your furry friend is healthy and happy. Your dog’s gums speak volumes about his overall health. You may devote your time and energy toward keeping your pet’s gums in perfect condition. It is pivotal to remember that gum disease in dogs is generally silent. According to WebMD, during the initial stages, gum disease shows no signs or outward symptoms. However, when gum disease is in the advanced stage, it has the potential of devastating your four-legged friend’s mouth, causing tremendous distress, chronic pain, missing teeth, eroded gums, and bone loss. Fortunately, gum disease in your furry friend can be prevented.
You should brush and floss your pup’s teeth regularly to maintain excellent oral hygiene and health and minimize the risks of developing periodontal disease. It is pivotal to brush your pet’s teeth at least thrice every week, using a soft-bristled toothbrush meant specifically, for dogs. Moreover, you may consider using an interdental brush or dental floss for cleaning scrupulously between the teeth with a tendency to get affected by plaque.
What do you mean by dog’s periodontal disease?
Your pup’s oral cavity may be invaded by periodontitis bacteria causing infection. Usually, periodontal disease progresses rapidly without any pervasive symptoms or signs until it reaches an advanced stage. In this context, you may know that gum disease may lead to chronic pain, loss of teeth & bone, and gum erosion. Moreover, the structures that support your pup’s teeth may become weak. When particles of food and bacteria get accumulated along your dog’s gum line, they trigger plaque, and when left unaddressed, the plaque may become hard to form a calculus called tartar. It may culminate in inflammation and irritation of the gum-line and areas surrounding it.
Brushing Your Dog’s Teeth: a Mandatory Routine Exercise
You may focus on correctly brushing your dog’s teeth, as recommended by the AKC or American Kennel Club.
- Consider choosing a quiet and peaceful time of the day to brush your furry friend’s teeth. Ensure no pets or kids are around to cause even the slightest distractions.
- Buy a specially-designed toothbrush from an online retailer or a physical pet store. The toothbrushes with curved handles are best for reaching your dog’s back teeth. Avoid using human toothpaste as the ingredients are not animal-friendly and may be hazardous. It is pivotal to seek regular consultation from a qualified and experienced dentist to maintain healthy dog gums.
- Look for a nicely-illuminated and comfortable spot for brushing your pet’s teeth carefully and at a leisurely pace.
- Before you start brushing your pup’s teeth, it is a good idea to put the brush into his mouth, touching the gums and teeth gently, first so that he gets used to the sensation and does not take an aggressive stance.
- You may allow him to start licking some of the toothpaste from your finger initially to make him understand what is coming his way.
- Add a generous blob of toothpaste to the special toothbrush. Start by brushing vigorously the front, side, bottom, and top teeth. Remember to keep praising your pet and give some treats as a reward to motivate them.
Regular Inspection is the Way to Go
It is a good habit to inspect your pet’s mouth regularly. It will help detect an issue early. It will be a good way of learning what is normal or unusual for your pet. It is best to inspect his mouth at least, once every week when your pet is willing to cooperate with you and is not in an aggressive mood. You should always examine meticulously and look for any changes.
- Color Check: Healthy gums look the same as human gums, with a moist look and a bubble-gum pink color.
- Moisture check: Normally, dog gums are a bit slippery and moist. If it seems dry or sticky, it may be a sign of dehydration or some other underlying issue that needs to be addressed immediately.
- Odor check: If you’ve been around your dog for any amount of time, chances are you have an idea of what their mouth and breathe smell like. Sure, this changes over time with the food they eat or if they dip their snout in something foul. That said healthy dogs have very minimal odor on their breath. Consistently foul breath might be a sign of dental disease, diabetes, or kidney disease, and you should get it checked out soon.
- Tartar check: Excessive tartar buildup could cause your pet distress and sometimes even get up to and overlap their gums. This should be examined.
- Look for bumps or growths: Take a peek and look for any ulcers, lumps, or bumps. If it is whitish, yellowish, or really any different from the rest of the mouth and a bit raised, it might be a good time to head over to the vet for a consultation.
- Check for swelling or bleeding too: Bleeding spots, cuts, and swollen gums are all causes for concern. Any blood in the mouth should be treated as an emergency and checked out post haste.
- Overgrown or receding gums: Overgrown gums can hide the teeth and cause distress when chewing, even if they look and feel healthy. Receding gums too, are not a good sign. Both cases do not need to be treated like an emergency; just be sure to have your canine friend checked out sooner rather than later.
Periodontal disease is a significant health issue in dogs. Gum disease affects dogs by the time they become three years old. Even though you may not notice any initial signs, periodontal disease may wreak havoc with a dog’s oral health. Go for regular dental checkups. You may take your dog for routine examinations to ensure gums and teeth are healthy and in top condition. Dental appointments with an expert can be best for spotting any oral issues promptly and addressing them before things get out of hand. If left unattended dental or gum issues may lead to tooth loss or acute pain. Your dentist has sound knowledge and experience to recommend effective preventive treatments. Scheduling regular appointments with a dentist is best for ensuring long-term oral health and overall well-being.