Do you brush your service dog’s teeth every day?

July 2, 2009 · Posted in Doggie Healthcare, Service Dogs 

When chatting with Dr. Kris Bannon, DVM and Fellow, Academy of Dentistry, I asked her how often I should brush my service dog’s teeth? I was hoping she would tell me that brushing Whistle’s teeth once a week would be enough to maintain his healthy teeth. But, that’s not what she said.

She strongly recommended brushing his teeth every day just as I would care for my own teeth. She also said that doggy breath was a sign that something was wrong. She said if our dog exhibited any type of doggy breath it was most likely that some health issue was going on that needed to be addressed. Dr. Bannon recommended using a toothbrush with soft bristles, even a child’s toothbrush, accompanied by a doggie toothpaste that can be purchased from your local vet or a pet supply store.

I have heard other veterinarians say that using such a doggie toothpaste was unhealthy because of the additives that can be found in these products. I asked Dr. Bannon her opinion on that issue and she said that if dogs received such a small amount of toothpaste each day it was not harmful to them.

I also asked her how often we should have our dog’s teeth cleaned professionally by a veterinarian. She said that larger dogs could go a few years in between cleanings but smaller dogs required more frequent cleanings.

The thing I heard loud and clear was doggie breath is not acceptable. I need to brush Whistle’s teeth every day and I also need to make sure that he is getting a professional examination of his teeth and mouth at a minimum of once a year but preferably every six months.

I don’t know about you, but I am feeling the need to go and brush Whistle’s teeth!


3 Responses to “Do you brush your service dog’s teeth every day?”

  1. Team Logan on July 5th, 2009 7:02 am

    Yes, I brush my service dog Logan’s teeth every morning. It’s part of our morning routine including cleaning any eye discharge. We call it “pretty eyes” and “pretty teeth”!

  2. Claire on February 28th, 2012 7:56 pm

    wish someone woulda told me this a long time ago… I have a 15 yr chihuahua..2 yrs ago I paid $550 to have all but 5 of her teeth extracted because they were going bad. next week she is going into surgery to have the remaining 5 teeth removed..will run from $600-780 depending on how long surgery takes. I got my dog when I was 11 so i had no idea i needed to brush her teeth…no vet ever told us. so save money and I’d say brush your dog’s teeth =) every day. if i could turn back time i would for sure.

  3. SD Gal on March 23rd, 2012 3:47 pm

    You have to use an enzymatic dog toothpaste, such as Virbac’s C.E.T., and do it at least once a day (at night after dinner is best). Your dog should see a veterinary dentist (this is different than your regular vet) one to two times per year, depending on the condition of the dog’s teeth. Stay away from feeding bananas (they cause cavities in dogs); letting the dog play with regular tennis balls (there are a few made-for-dogs tennis balls that don’t have the harsh-on-teeth outer fabric – but also don’t let the dog play with the ball all day, as it can shape a ball-shaped space in his set of teeth); and other harmful items your vet dentist will tell you about.

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