How to Properly Brush Dog’s Teeth: Beginner’s Guide

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As a caring pet parent, you do what you can to keep your furry buddy in top condition. A lot goes into taking care of your pet – more than you previously thought. This effort doesn’t end with simply feeding and making sure he exercises regularly. And it requires more than just taking him to the veterinarian for checkups. 

When was the last time you brushed your dog’s teeth? Yes, your dog’s oral care is just as important as those checkups. If you haven’t been looking into it, now is a perfect time to start. Proper oral care makes a world of difference between healthy teeth and an oral ailment that could worsen over time.

Pet parents should brush dog’s teeth regularly and always monitor inside their mouth every week or so. If you see any of these indications of dental complications, don’t delay, take your dog to the vet:

  • Misaligned or missing teeth
  • Bad breath
  • Change in eating or dog chewing habits
  • Pawing at the face or mouth
  • Discolored, broken, missing or crooked teeth
  • Red, swollen, painful or bleeding gums
  • Excessive drooling
  • Yellowish-brown tartar crust along the gum line
  • Bumps or growths within the mouth

Dog Dental Cleaning

Brush Dog's Teeth

Before you master how to care for your dog’s teeth, you should be aware of what a healthy mouth looks like. Healthy dog teeth should be free of plaque and, most importantly, clean. Furthermore, your dog’s 42 teeth should be whole and not ragged or damaged.

Your dog’s tongue should be moistened and free of lumps or marks. His gums should be pink-ish. Keep in mind that some dog breeds have black gums. As a parent, it’s up to you to make sure you know what your dog’s mouth normally looks like. 

Let’s get to it, shall we? Here’s how to brush dog’s teeth.

Brushing Dogs Teeth

Brushing your dog’s teeth might seem ridiculous, given dogs’ lifestyle, but it’s a great way to prevent him from years of suffering. Don’t worry; brushing your dog’s teeth doesn’t need to be a daily ritual. We understand that most dogs aren’t too enamored with the idea, but if you start early, you can train your dog to appreciate it and make it less of a burden for you. 

First things first, get toothpaste that is uniquely formulated for dogs. The best thing about dog toothpaste is that they usually come in tasty flavors. Second, use a dog toothbrush to start cleaning.

Brush your dog’s teeth in short, circular movements. Gently raise the lip and brush the gum line as well as the outside of the teeth. Be sure to talk to your pet to ease him into contentment.

Chances are, your pet probably won’t tolerate you brushing his mouth in one sitting. Stop every 10 seconds and give him some love (a few pets and happy talking will do). To avert severe dental conditions, it is recommended to brush dog’s teeth two to three times a week.

Dog Tooth Wipes

Some of you will find it almost impossible to brush your dog’s teeth. If that sounds like you, tooth wipes are an excellent alternative. Tooth wipes are designed to be polished against your dog’s teeth to help get rid of plaque. However, unlike toothbrushes, tooth wipes are not able to provide deep, intensive cleaning. 

Dog Dental Treats

We’ve never met a dog that didn’t love treats. Dental treats are another great method of cleaning your dog’s teeth. These special treats are designed to get rid of plaque buildup and even carry ingredients that cleanse your dog’s breath as it cleans his mouth. If you were looking for the holy grail of cleaning techniques, dental treats are the closest thing to it. These treats come in a variety of sizes, shapes, and flavors, so you are certain to find something your dog will fall in love with. 

Professional Cleaning Sessions

How to Properly Brush Your Dog’s Teeth: Beginner's Guide

Professional cleanings are perhaps the most reliable way to ensure your dog’s oral health is at peak condition. Your vet knows what’s best for your dog’s health and will point any concerns you weren’t able to detect. Although it will cost you for a visit, you can rest assured, you’ll only have to do it once a year.

Just like your dentist, the vet will be able to prevent, locate, and treat any issues that might need some attention. If you are a dog parent, we recommend visiting your vet for a professional cleaning session.


Many pet parents neglect the importance of their dog’s oral hygiene. The fact that you are reading this means you are taking the necessary steps to change your ways. 

According to the American Veterinary Dental College, most dogs show signs of periodontal disease by the age of three years old, with the primary sign being bad breath. We know dogs’ mouths are not the most enjoyable things to smell, but no dogs’ breaths should be bad enough to make a person gag.

Be a good parent, take care of your pet’s wellness. If you notice anything different in your dog’s mouth, like discoloration, swelling, lumps, or a change in smell, reach out to your vet promptly. Any of these symptoms could mean that your dog is undergoing an oral condition that needs professional attention. By staying on top of your dog’s oral care, you can easily avoid all of the aforementioned common conditions. Show your furry buddy that you care; keep those teeth clean.

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Maria A.

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