Do you really have to brush your dog's teeth?

dog dental health

It’s that time of year again… February is here and that means it’s another month to talk about the importance of your pet’s dental health! I think just about every dog owner would be lying if they said they were truly diligent about brushing and flossing their own teeth regularly, let alone brushing their dog’s teeth. As if there wasn’t already enough to do in the day, right?!

But there are some pretty important reasons why you shouldn’t ignore that “doggy” breath. It doesn’t have to be the norm that dogs have terrible breath; in fact, bad breath is usually a sign of a more serious health problem, ranging from rotting teeth and periodontal disease, to potentially life-threatening diseases in the heart, lungs, liver, and kidneys.

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Top six (preventable!) pet health problems

The importance of this is confirmed in the 2011 “State of Pet Health” Report, a 40 page comprehensive summary of research conducted by Banfield Pet Hospital, a nationwide network of veterinary hospitals. Compiled from medical data from more than 2.1 million dogs and 450,000 cats, the report lists the most common diagnoses in dogs and cats, and details six specific and preventable health conditions that are increasingly affecting our pets:

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earthbath features a "how-to" video on brushing your dog's teeth for Pet Dental Health Month!

February is Pet Dental Health Month! You might buy your pet the best organic, locally-sourced food, natural treats, walk him daily, and maybe even dress him in designer doggie duds, but do you also give the same level of attention to his doggie dentifrice? Most people don’t know that the most common health problem in dogs is actually periodontal disease. In fact, over 75% of all dogs show symptoms of oral disease by the time they are three! Poor dental hygiene isn’t just about “doggie breath!” In fact, bad breath shouldn’t be an acceptable norm for dogs or cats. Tooth and gum problems can become painful and serious if left untreated and could cause a whole host of health problems, even aggression. Over time, unchecked dental problems can result in plaque and bacteria build-up that can enter the bloodstream and cause serious disease in the heart, lungs, liver and kidneys. Here are four tips, including a how-to video, on how to start a dental care routine with your dog.

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