Dog Plaque Removal

Dog plaque is formed as a thin film on the surface of teeth. It's a combination of food particles, bacteria and minerals that are present in the dog's saliva. Plaque can be easily removed with teeth brushing, chew toys or chew treats.

If you fail to remove the plaque layer, it will transform into tartar, which will lead to other dental problems such as tooth decay and periodontal disease.

Teeth Brushing

Plaque can be removed with regular teeth brushing. Brushing is recommended on a daily basis, or at least once every 2 days. Plaque can transform into tartar in 3 days if you don't remove it, and tartar cannot be removed with teeth brushing.

Use a children's tooth brush or a pet tooth brush with soft bristles and special pet tooth paste. Tooth paste for humans will cause an upset stomach.

Start by giving your dog a taste of the tooth paste. Pet tooth pastes have meat flavor, so the dog should enjoy them. Allow the dog to lick the paste off your finger. Then put some paste on the dog's teeth and rub with your finger. Place the tooth brush at a 45 degree angle to the teeth. Gently move the brush back and forth.

Puppies have 28 baby teeth, while adult dogs have 42. You need to clean each tooth, to ensure that the plaque is entirely removed. In the beginning, when you try to get your dog used to brushing his teeth, you might only be able to wash the front teeth, as dogs are not typically cooperative. In time, you should be able to wash the back teeth as well.

Dog Chew Treats

Dog chew treats can act as scraping agents, removing the pellicle of plaque from the dog's teeth. Replace the regular dog treats with dental chew treats, which have a hard surface that will clean his teeth. Dogs like treats and these are also healthy.

Canine Chew Toys

The deposited plaque can be removed while playing. Give your dog a few chew toys. If these have a tough texture, they will remove the deposits of plaque. Ropes or tennis balls are great chew toys for this.

Chew toys should be suitable for your dog; make sure the toys are not too hard, as some can cause fractures.

Professional Teeth Cleaning

A regular professional dental cleaning performed by your vet is needed at least once per year.

The vet will put the dog under anesthesia and will remove the calculus and plaque deposits. The vet may also apply a dental agent that will delay the deposits of plaque.

Kibble Food

Studies have shown that dogs that eat kibble food have healthier teeth than ones that eat canned food. This is due to the fact that the dry food can remove plaque.

If your dog needs to be on a wet diet, you can supplement this with some dry chew treats that have the same effect as kibble food.