Although it may not be apparent to everyone, canines are just as susceptible as human beings to a variety of harmful dental disorders, whether gingivitis or periodontal disease. The earlier you get your wee puppy accustomed to regular dental hygiene, the easier lifelong tooth maintenance very likely will be.
Before you start brushing your pup's teeth, it's extremely important to buy an appropriate kind. Unfortunately, you can't use whatever is lurking in your medicine cabinet at the moment. Human toothpaste is formulated specifically for people, not canines, and can often just trigger unnecessary tummy distress and discomfort in your poor pet. No, thank you.
Visit a pet supplies store to look for a dog-specific toothpaste. Although most canine toothpastes are safe for pooches of all age groups, check the labeling just to be safe. If you have any questions, ask your veterinarian for reputable brand recommendations. Certain dog toothpastes mention both adult dogs and puppies in the actual name of the product. Dog toothpaste aims to do all of the same things that human toothpaste does, from eliminating bad breath to managing plaque. One common option, enzymatic toothpaste, is entirely foam-free and totally OK for dogs to swallow.
Dog toothpaste comes in flavors that may seem rather creepy and confusing to people, but are actually pretty appealing to the fluffy ones. Some common examples include peanut, poultry and beef. No classic spearmint or peppermint taste for these guys!
While you're in the midst of getting your puppy used to a new home and house-training him, the thought of brushing his teeth may not even occur to you. However, the ASPCA urges owners to begin brushing dogs' teeth from an early age. Not only is it easier to get dogs used to brushing when you start them young, it helps to protect them against disease. Periodontal disease is especially common in canines 5 years old and older, but you can never be too cautious when it comes to health and well-being.