Why your dog has bad breath…and what to do for it

Why your dog has bad breath…and what to do for it

We all love getting kisses from our family pets, but in many instances, the odor is out of control.  Why does it smell so bad and what can you do about it?

It doesn’t take much time for plaque to form in the mouth.  You are reminded of this fact every morning prior to brushing your teeth.  Plaque contains bacteria and other materials (cellular debris, white blood cells, carbohydrates, polysaccharides and salivary products).  Left untreated, this bacteria can convert to a more sulfur-producing gram negative bacteria.  It is this sulfur by-product that you smell when you get close to your pet’s mouth.   If you are not brushing your pet’s teeth at least 3 times per week, plaque will develop and so will the smell.

dog breathWhat can you do about it?  First have a professional look in your pet’s mouth (and I don’t mean a groomer or your breeder) .  A veterinary dentist (AVDC Diplomate) is trained to notice subtleties that otherwise can go unnoticed in your pet’s mouth, so ask your veterinarian to refer to a specialist if he/she can’t find the problem.  A professional ORAL ATP (Assessment, Treatment, and Prevention) should be considered.  No, this is not a ‘dental’ or a ‘dental prophy’.  It is more comprehensive and your pet deserves it and you should demand it.   Finally, start using approved plaque preventive products (VOHC.org) going forward AFTER the ORAL ATP.

Always ask questions first!  We’re here to answer them for you.  We encourage your comments!

Dr. Barden Greenfield (Your Pet Dentist)