February is National Pet Dental Month! In honor of that, we are going to teach you about dental care for all life stages of your pets. First we are starting with Puppies!
- If you are lucky enough to have gotten your pet as a puppy, you know about those sharp little daggers in their mouth, more commonly known as puppy teeth. Lucky for us, they do lose these teeth around 6 months of age and they are replaced by their shiny, new and permanent adult teeth.
- This is the best time to teach your pet that brushing their teeth can be fun! Get your puppy accustomed to having their mouth handled by teaching them that it is ok to have people playing with their mouth and that they can get treats for it.
- You can start by touching their mouth with your fingers when they are relaxed or worn out by you. Lift their lips and rub their gums and teeth. If they do not like this, try putting something like peanut butter (without xylitol!) or flavored pet toothpaste on your fingers. The association with handling their mouth and treats will start to develop.
- Their sweet little mouths will be sore, just like children, when new teeth are starting to come in. Try giving them a safe toy to chew on, but make sure it isn’t too hard! A good rule of thumb is that it should be soft enough to make a dent in. Just make sure that these toys are only given under supervision, as we do not want them ingesting pieces of it.
- Be sure to use positive reinforcement and treats to encourage the type of behavior that you want them to have for the rest of their lives. Throw a “party” and get very excited when they are good for their teeth brushing. This will ensure a positive experience for you both for the rest of your lives!
If you ever have any questions or would like a demo, call us! We would love to show you tips and tricks to keep your pets mouth clean and healthy.