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Dry food diets to dental chews, expert tips to protect your dog’s oral health – Hindustan Times

4 minutes, 9 seconds Read
By, New Delhi

Mar 26, 2024 08:20 PM IST

Dental health is indeed connected with oral health and it’s especially true in case of dogs that can face consequences of poor oral health in form of illnesses.

Signs of dental issues are easy to miss in your dog, as most of them are quite good in hiding their pain. They may throw a tantrum in eating, become lethargic or irritable; unless thoroughly checked these dental woes can escalate into something serious. The tooth decay over a period of time can lead to periodontal diseases in your furry friends than can even be life threatening in many cases. Make sure to get a dog-friendly brush for your animal companion and get them excited to do this morning ritual without fail to prevent future trouble. Check their gums and teeth thoroughly. While pink gums are considered healthy, red, or swollen gums could be sign of a dental disease. (Also read | Beginner’s guide: 9 essential tips for first-time pet owners)

Periodontal disease (PD), commonly referred to as gum disease, is a prevalent concern affecting cats and dogs globally, with an estimated prevalence reaching up to 85%. (Freepik)
Periodontal disease (PD), commonly referred to as gum disease, is a prevalent concern affecting cats and dogs globally, with an estimated prevalence reaching up to 85%. (Freepik)

Dental health is indeed connected with oral health and it’s especially true in the case of dogs that can face consequences of poor dental health in the form of kidney, liver and heart disease.

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“Periodontal disease (PD), commonly referred to as gum disease, is a prevalent concern affecting cats and dogs globally, with an estimated prevalence reaching up to 85%. It becomes particularly evident in around 80% of dogs by the age of three, showcasing a spectrum of severity from mild plaque and gingivitis to more severe inflammation and potential tooth loss. Contributing factors such as age, smaller breed size, and neutering increase the risk of periodontal disease in dogs, which can have ramifications on their kidneys, liver, and heart health,” says Dr Umesh Kalahalli, Small Animal Consultant, Mars Petcare India.

Dr Kalhalli says apart from brushing, dry food diet and dental chews could help get rid of plaque and tartar. The veterinary expert recommends a diet rich in calcium and phosphorous for your furballs to maintain strong teeth.

“While daily brushing is ideal but not always feasible, alternative practices like dietary choices and dental chews are essential. Dry food diets formulated for dental care reduce plaque and tartar, and a balanced diet rich in calcium and phosphorus supports strong teeth, contributing to overall oral health,” says the expert.

ORAL HEALTH TIPS FOR YOUR DOG

Dr Kalahalli shares in details oral health tips for adorable buddy:

1. Brushing for prevention

While daily teeth brushing is considered the ‘gold standard’ for preventing gum disease in dogs, it’s unfortunately not widely practiced by pet owners. This lack of adherence highlights the necessity for alternative preventive measures to maintain oral health in dogs. These alternatives may include incorporating dental chews, making appropriate dietary choices, and scheduling regular dental check-ups with a veterinarian to address any oral health concerns effectively.

2. Oral care chews’ role

Oral care chews are helpful in establishing an efficient oral care routine, even if they shouldn’t take the place of routine dental treatment or prescription drugs for preventing gum disease in dogs. These chews are beneficial for enhancing dental hygiene and preventing the formation of bacteria that lead to canine gum disease. Including dental care chews in your dog’s routine can help them keep their teeth healthy in between cleanings and treatments from a dentist.

3. The influence of diet

Dry food diets have a good effect on oral health by decreasing dental deposits and the incidence of periodontal disease in dogs and cats. For developing pups’ teeth to be strengthened and for older pets’ mouths to remain healthy, it is essential to balance the diet with the recommended ratio of calcium to phosphorus. By concentrating on these dietary aspects, pets’ overall dental health is improved, which benefits their long-term oral health.

4. Avoid hazardous chews and bones

Giving pets oral chews, sticks, or bones that weren’t scientifically created can be dangerous because they could injure their teeth or mouths or cause choking accidents. Certain goods might include dangerous chemicals or colours that aren’t good for pets, and rawhide chews might have bugs in them that could make your pet fall sick.

5. Regular veterinary examinations

It is advisable to arrange for your dog to receive routine dental examinations from a veterinarian. To efficiently maintain your pet’s oral health, the veterinarian may advise scaling operations to keep teeth clean and healthy or offer chews that are appropriate and specifically made to prevent gum infections.

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