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Brushing Your Dog's Teeth

If your dog has never been exposed to brushing, we suggest that you start by getting the dog used to it slowly. Pick a time when your dog is calm and quiet, (after a play session or a long walk). When your dog is relaxed you can begin to get your dog used to the brushing process.

Acquaint Your Dog with the Process
The first few times do not use a toothbrush. Gently stroke the outside of the dog’s cheeks with your finger. After your dog becomes comfortable with your touch, place a small amount of doggie toothpaste on your finger and let him taste it. Dogs love the taste of dog toothpaste products. (Never use human toothpaste – they foam too much and dogs dislike the flavor and sensation)

Introducing the Tooth Brush
There are several types of brushes on the market that work great for most dogs. They range from a traditional style brush to a small over the fingertip brush. The fingertip is the easiest to introduce so it is the most commonly used one.

Place a small amount of toothpaste on the toothbrush. In a slow, circular motion, gently brush one or two teeth and the adjoining gum line.

Begin Brushing
Once your dog is used to the toothpaste and the brush you can gradually increase the number of teeth you brush. It is important to eventually brush all of your dog’s teeth. Plaque and tartar have a tendency to build up on the back molars and they are often overlooked because the tartar cannot be seen unless the dog’s gums are pulled back.

Go slowly and gently. It is not important to brush all of the teeth at one time. Stop brushing before your dog begins to fuss. Stop each session while it is still fun for your dog. Remember to give your dog lavish praise during and after brushing.

Tarter doesn’t accumulate much on the inside surfaces of the teeth, so you should concentrate the brushing on the outer surfaces of the teeth and gums.

Follow these simple steps and your dog will actually look forward to brushing. Brush your dog’s teeth at least 3 times per month to prevent tartar buildup. Proper brushing can improve your dog’s overall health and reduce costly veterinarian visits.

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