We’re almost midway through February. The first signs of Spring are on the horizon. It seems like the major holidays are either behind us or far ahead of us. That is, until you jolt awake in the middle of the night, when you remember the one February holiday you almost forgot to celebrate: National Pet Dental Health Month.
Thankfully, you don’t need to run out for roses. Because brushing your dog’s teeth is an act of love all its own. And what’s more, it makes all those slobbery kisses even more enjoyable for both of you.
But the moral of this month is, yes, a dog’s dental hygiene is important. According to PetMD, over 80% of dogs show some form of dental disease by age 3. And while bad breath is unpleasant, the later consequences are even more unsavory: oral pain, tooth loss and organ damage.
And here’s the really bad news. Try as they might, our trainers haven’t managed to get a dog to brush their own teeth. Chalk it up to a lack of opposable thumbs if you must. But rest assured, we’ll keep at it. Until then, you’ll need to jump in with a brush and break up that plaque yourself.
Just like humans, daily brushing is best. But, let’s be real, some people have trouble doing that for themselves — let alone their dogs. So, if you can manage to care for your pup’s teeth a few times a week, you’ll be in good shape. And you won’t even need much to get started, just a dog toothbrush and pet-specific toothpaste, which you can tell apart from human toothpaste because the flavors are chicken and peanut butter, instead of mint.
It can take some practice and patience to introduce brushing into your dog’s routine. But once you’ve figured it out, it’s like clipping nails and grooming coats. For starters, we like this American Kennel Club guide, which offers step-by-step instructions for your first cleaning session.
Of course, we like to make things easier too. So after a day of play, our team of talented doggy stylists can clean your pup tooth and nail through your local Bowl’s Paw Spaw. Teeth cleanings are just ten bucks and are also available, no playtime necessary, at our South County location.
Here’s to a happy, plaque-free February!