Posted by: | March 1, 2011


Just like humans, dogs can develop cavities and periodontal disease from poor oral health. Sadly, almost 80 percent of dogs will develop periodontal disease by the age of three, making it the most common health issue in pets.

Well… I want to change that! And I will change it… with your help.

We’re going to discuss some tips to help keep your pet’s mouth clean. Then, we can forward this blog post to everyone you know. Then, they can forward it to everyone they know. Our plan is to raise awareness, then have everyone practicing great oral care for their pets. Soon, we can drastically decrease these numbers, and win the fight against periodontal disease.

Only five percent of dogs and cats receive annual oral care. We need to make certain that we are getting our pets in for their examinations. Your dog can’t tell you when he has a toothache or sore gums. And if he could, by then it may already be too late. If you can’t remember the last time your vet checked your pet’s mouth, go ahead and schedule an appointment.

Often you will see treats or toys which claim to clean your dog’s teeth. Realistically, these treats are ineffective. It’s the same as simply chewing gum instead of brushing your teeth. Make sure to brush your dog’s teeth at least 3 times per week. Use a pet-friendly toothpaste. NEVER use a human toothpaste on your pet. The fluoride found in human toothpaste is too strong for your pet and will most likely make them sick.

The brushing process will be easier if you start early. Most adult dogs who aren’t used to brushing will be turned off the first few times. Puppies will grow up doing it, and it will be normal for them. If you have an adult dog who doesn’t care for you sticking your finger in their mouth, you may want to start with finger brushes. You should be able to find them at any pet store. Remember that you want your dog to enjoy their brushing, so don’t force them. Try to make it as comfortable as possible. Consider using only your fingers until they warm up to it. If they are still struggling, try rubbing peanut butter on their gums until they get used to the experience. Be consistent, don’t simply give up and then try again in a week. The key is to make it part of your routine so they will eventually become comfortable with it. I recommend starting every night after dinner. This way it will easily become more routine, and should be closer to bedtime after a long day when your dog is most likely tired.


If you can already see any of these warning signs, call your vet for an appointment.

Yellowish-brown tartar crust along the gum line

Bumps or growths within the mouth

Red, swollen, painful or bleeding gums

Discolored, broken, misaligned or missing teeth

Excessive drooling


Change in eating or chewing habits

Bad breath

Pawing at the face or mouth

Remember, the bacteria build up on your dog’s teeth and gums can enter the bloodstream to cause damage to the vital organs (heart, liver, kidneys, etc.). It’s your job as a responsible pet parent to help make sure this doesn’t happen.

Thanks for your help!

Tim Heise
– Certified Pet Care Specialist
Absolute Pet Care, LLC
Scottsdale, AZ


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