Walking and playing with your dog is not the only way to make him happy! In fact, if you manage to give some love to his teeth by cleaning them and even whitening them. This will send him a huge signal that you are there for him even for small details! This will convert to more happiness, health and loyalty on his part …
So, How to Whiten Dogs Teeth Properly? One of the best ways is to provide him with foods (like snacks and raw bones) that won’t stick to his teeth and would clean them organically … Chewing toys are also a great way to go. Not to mention, the possibility to prepare home remedies based on elements like baking soda to brush your dog’s teeth.
Of course, there are a lot more to that!
Indeed, depending on how stained your dog’s teeth are and how much plaque and tartar are built up you will decide on which whitening/cleaning technique you will opt for.
This also depends on whether your dog let you brush his teeth or not. Because this also could be a factor as many people are having lot of trouble doing that!
That’s why; I’ve felt it is important to put together this Full guide and make it as detailed as possible to, hopefully, lead you towards the right and safer process!
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Let’s start with some natural Ways to clean and whiten your dog’s teeth
Lot of people tend to explore the natural whitening and cleaning methods before trying anything else. That’s why I’ve chosen to start with this approach. I Hope this will be helpful for you!
1. Natural Dental Sprays
Natural dental sprays are commonly used by dog owners for cleaning purposes, especially canine teeth. These dental sprays have mostly the ability to prevent many kinds of tartar and plaque by limiting the growth of responsible bacteria.
It can also limits bad breath effectively! To have such an effect, you need to target the most stained teeth directly.
If you are worried about the taste to not please your dog, this is a none-issue! Indeed, it has a pleasant minty taste that will keep your dog’s mouth fresh.
One of the best dog teeth cleaning sprays in the market is most likely “Premium Pet Dental Spray” by Pets are Kids too. They seem to do a great job.
2. Raw Bones
Take couple of seconds and imagine something you have a big urge to do …
… Done? …
… Your dogs have that same urge for chewing!
Indeed, raw bones won’t only satisfy this huge urge to chew, but also it will clean and even whiten their teeth organically!
Instead if you use cooked bones, it could easily splinter and harm your dog by causing all kinds of problems. Including intestinal issues.
3. Coconut oil
You can consider it as a natural toothpaste not only for your dog but also for yourself. It has the ability to limit many sorts of microbes which promotes a better oral health.
Yet it seems that the taste doesn’t please them that much!
So you should use some tricks by taking advantage of some vegetables that dogs usually like.
In fact, if you drip coconut oil (gel form if possible) inside the carrot (by making a hole into it). You can then give the carrot for your dog to chew.
Even if it would cause some mess, it is still a smart and effective way to clean his teeth.
4. Baking Soda
One of the common questions I usually hear is : “Can I brush my dog’s teeth with baking soda?”. Indeed YES, you can definitely do it!
The items you will need are: a toothbrush, baking soda, a cup of water and a bowl to mix everything up.
Most dogs don’t like a toothbrush into their mouth because it may feel big and not comfortable at all. So you need to choose a little or child toothbrush.
Fill the bowl with baking soda, then add water, just enough to make the mixture wet. Fill your brush with some of the mixture and brush gently but quickly.
I say this because dogs, generally, don’t like the strong taste of baking soda!
Do this for 2 or 3 times a week!
5. Bully Sticks
Bully sticks are another great cleaning method that represents several advantages including:
- It usually lasts long enough to help manifesting some results.
- Not messy the way a bone for example could be.
- Most dogs find them tasty!
Bully sticks are probably the best way to satisfy their big chewing urge. As a consequence, dental plaque will easily be removed!
In addition, it is another good way to keep your dog occupied for a decent period of time.
Even if this method is very good, keep in mind that you should keep an eye on your dog during the process. So you will be able to prevent him swallowing big amounts of it. Keep in mind that bully sticks has high calorie levels, that’s why you should give him always small amounts.
Antlers are also pleasant to dogs to chew!
It helps removing plaque as well, not to mention their ability to relieve their gums and teeth. What’s interesting about antlers is their reusability. That is, you can use one antler up to 3 weeks before they can’t be used anymore.
7. Hydrogen Peroxide
For Hydrogen Peroxide, you can use it following exactly the Baking Soda method I’ve explained above. By adding hydrogen peroxide to the baking soda mixture.
The advantage of hydrogen peroxide is its ability to add more bacteria removal capabilities to the mixture. This is even better for plaque and stains prevention.
8. Healthy Foods
This is something you should not take for granted at all! Indeed, including dog foods that clean and strengthen teeth is Crucial.
You should include more Omega-3 acids rich foods like fish. It promotes a better mouth health and particularly good periodontal tissues.
Probiotic foods are also beneficial to grow good bacteria populations that promote a healthier mouth.
I’ve found some brands in this dog website, that would provide you with some of these beneficial foods:
- Science Diet Oral Care For Dogs
- Iams Chuck Dental Defense Diet For Dogs
- Hill’s Prescription Diet Dental Care Canine T/D: Original Bites
- Hill’s Prescription Diet Dental Care Canine T/D: Small Bites
- Purina Pro Plan Veterinary Diets Dental Health Canine Formula Dry Food
- Purina Pro Plan Veterinary Diets Dental Health Canine Formula Small Bites Dry Food
- Eukanuba Adult Maintenance Diet for Dogs
More Dog cleaning Products that actually Work
If you don’t find yourself in the natural approach, you might look for other methods that might be more effective.
9. Dental Treats
Dental treats are also very helpful to whiten dog’s teeth and also to provide something tasty for him.
Try to look for a dental treat which is gluten-free and with low-fat to minimize any health impacts on your dog. Especially, if this method works for you and you are intending to use it for the long run.
10. Teeth Wipes
Tooth Wipes are a good option for dogs who just run when a toothbrush is put in their mouth. They contribute in removing bad germs responsible for nasty breath, as well as removing plaque.
Apply them along their teeth and gum once in a while.
11. Dental Cleaning Toys
Dental Chewing toys are designed to push your dog to chew more. By doing so, you will help him eliminate more of plaque off your dog’s teeth.
As there are different chewing toy textures, you need to try 2 or 3 different ones; before you make sure which one he likes the most.
Pay attention when your dog’s chewing it, not to swallow it during the process.
12. Teeth Cleaning Powder for Dogs
If you lack of patience brushing your dog’s teeth, this option might be a good one. Teeth cleaning powder for dogs have several dental benefits.
The process is pretty simple; you should only add the powder on a daily basis to his food (whether it is dry or wet).
It has a pleasant taste that most pets like, so no worries! Generally, the plaque and tartar removal start to be noticeable after a month of usage.
One of the best teeth cleaning powders for dogs is “ProDen PlaqueOff Dental Powder”. You can check it here on Amazon.
13. Dog teeth cleaning liquid / Water Additives
There are several additives on market places that promote a better oral health for your dog. It is pretty simple to use …
… You should only add a little bit of it on a water bowl that your dog drinks from.
The only concern, is that pets may not like the taste … So you might need some time and patience before your pet get used to it.
Indirect ways to promote white and clean teeth for your dog
All methods we’ve talked about before are pretty much straightforward. Actually, there are ways that you can still keep white and healthy teeth for your pet addressing this on a different way.
14. Use some dog gingivitis home remedies
Gingivitis is a nasty issue that you should fix before thinking about plaque removal and whitening for your dog. By doing so, you will be in a better position to clean your pet’s teeth following any of the methods described above.
Indeed, gingivitis is a bad inflammation with many signs, the most common ones are:
- Tartar heavy buildup.
- Bad smell coming from your dog’s mouth.
- Your dog becomes more hesitant before eating.
- Bleeding gums.
Once you start noticing these signs, you should try some home remedies that may help you to heal or at least reduce the issue.
Below, some examples:
Chlorhexidine Rinse: is a disinfectant generally used to sterilize tools used as surgical instruments. It works fine also as a rinse. Indeed, it binds with gum tissues which help tackling the gingivitis issue. You should use a 0.2% solution to avoid some of its side effects which is tooth cavities.
Aloea Vera gel mixed with Peroxide: Mix aloe vera gel with a 3% solution of hydrogen peroxide before applying it along your pet’s teeth and gum. This antiseptic mixture will help you reduce gingivitis significantly.
Stomadhex: It is an antiseptic that you could stick to your pet’s upper lip for few days. This would be helpful. If you can’t get one, check with your veterinarian.
15. Try to eliminate your dog’s bad breath
Even if you manage to clean your dog’s teeth and he still has a bad breath. You better have a check why it is the case by taking him to take an oral exam.
The vet would help you to understand the source of the issue and help you on what you should be doing. I say this because sometimes this bad breath could be a sign of something more serious than a simple oral mouth problem.
In addition, you can try adding some lemon to your pet’s water bowl. Don’t squeeze a lot, just a little bit … Otherwise, your dog may not like it.
16. Work on disinfecting your dog’s mouth
Disinfecting your pet’s mouth is also an important milestone towards clean and white teeth. So, how to disinfect your dog’s mouth effectively?
You can do so by feeding your pet dental treats as described before.
In addition, you should clean his bowls and even disinfect them from time to time to make sure they don’t have anything that could be harmful.
If you are not totally sure, or a bit confused, your vet may help you!
My dog won’t let me brush his teeth … What should I do?
I know, it is not easy at all to brush your dog’s teeth in first place! Some dogs may be tolerant to a brush with a weird taste in their mouth. But the reality is, most dogs won’t make the brushing process as easy as you may imagine.
So, How do you brush your dog’s teeth with ease?
To begin with, you should always consider a little toothbrush (probably a kids brush). Indeed, it is uncomfortable for dogs to have a big brush on their mouth.
Toothbrush bristles should be soft! You can warm-up your dog by inserting your finger and simulating brushing to make him ready for actual brushing.
Try to play around with their mouth gently … Most dogs like it, so they tend to open their mouth more widely.
If your dog is a big boy, feel free to have a friend holding him before brushing.
You can use a pet paste with flavors like meat and chicken to encourage them…
How often should you get your dog’s teeth cleaned?
When it comes to this, there are 2 different aspects that you should differentiate: at-home cleaning and professional in-office cleaning.
As far as at-home cleaning is concerned, you should consider it as often as possible. If you can manage to perform it every day it would be even better.
If you are willing to do so, you should consider an at-home cleaning schedule that mixes different cleaning techniques. That’s why in this article I talk about so many different cleaning methods!
For examples, you can consider this schedule:
- Day1: Raw Bones.
- Day2: Chewing Toy.
- Day3: Bully Sticks.
- Day4: Antlers.
- Day5: Coconut Oil.
- Day6: Brushing with Baking soda or a pet paste.
- Day7: Rest.
By doing so, your dog will end up getting clean and white teeth. Not to mention, that he won’t be bothered by just one cleaning method every single day.
Now, as far as professional cleaning sessions are concerned, you should consider at least one per year. This is not just for cleaning or whitening! It is also to get an overall overview of his oral health and to prevent issues like dental plaque buildup and gum issues.
Is human toothpaste good or bad for dogs?
My answer is: Never consider a human toothpaste for your beloved dog!
Human toothpaste is not suitable for dogs; it may even result in some bad side-effects!
Indeed, the risks of regular toothpaste for your dog are as follow:
- Fluoride: it is great for tooth decay, cavities and fresh breath. But it might be dangerous for your dog. It may cause serious loss of appetite and stomach issues. Not to mention some depression problems that might appear later on.
- Xylitol: if ingested by your dog, it might reduce dramatically his sugar levels which could even lead to death.
- Some additives: These additives are bad for our health as humans, this applies also for dogs. It may hurt their liver badly.
The good news is that there are many examples of pet toothpastes which don’t represent any of these dangers. In addition, they have different flavors (Chicken, Fish …) that match your pet’s taste preferences.
How much to get my dog’s teeth cleaned?
A legit question I was wondering myself! It depends of course on the region you are living in; that is you would pay more in a bigger city comparing to a smaller one.
At the end of the day, cleaning your dog’s teeth professionally is more of a package. In other words, if you are going to clean your dog’s teeth only, this won’t cost you more than few 100s of buck.
But if you add things like dental X-rays, oral radiographs or even tooth extractions or surgery, you might end up paying more than $1,000.
There are some patients who confirm they’ve paid $3,000 for a complete package. But this includes much highly qualified people and certified technicians.
At the end of the day, this kind of professional cleaning should be done once a year (or more if needed). So, I think that saving some money for this cleaning session worth it! Don’t you think so?
Does all what we’ve said apply for puppies?
So far, all what we’ve said apply mostly to big boys, but what about puppies? How to clean a puppy’s teeth?
There are some tips that would help you to clean your puppy’s teeth:
- Encourage your puppy to consume crunchy dry foods.
- Offer him little slices of carrots for example for chewing.
- Give him a little dental chewing toy that would satisfy his chewing instinct and clean his teeth at the same time.
- Ask your vet about dental rinse products for puppies.
- Don’t brush you puppy’s teeth with a brush, rather do it just by your fingers.
- There are some finger brushes in the market that you can use, just make sure you don’t poke deep his throat.
- You can cover a chewing toy by some pet paste and give it to him.
- Don’t brush his teeth too much, just about 3 times a week.
Hope this helps!
Finally, is dog teeth cleaning necessary?
I would never spend a week writing this complete article about something I consider not necessary!
In fact, if you don’t take time cleaning your dog’s teeth you are just putting his oral health and even overall health at stake!
Start by implementing some at-home tips I’ve explained above and always keep supervising your dog’s oral health.
On the other hand, professional cleaning may not be really necessary as far as you know what you are doing. Yet, it is recommended at least once a year!
Never hesitate to have your dog checked on vet’s office whenever you notice something wrong with his oral health.
So, yea, dog teeth cleaning is not a luxury, it is a must!
To sum up, I’ve tried to list all possible cleaning and whitening technique for your pet at best of my knowledge.
Don’t be too obsessed with that! That is, just choose some cleaning techniques that you think you can implement them easily in your dog’s routine. Then start including them little by little until your dog gets used to it.
… Now I really want to hear from you!
How can you assess your dog’s oral health at the moment?
What cleaning techniques do you usually use?
After reading this article what method you are more willing to try now?
Share your experience in the comment section below, so others will learn too …