Dogs are like us when it comes to teeth. If we don’t practice good dental hygiene, our teeth deteriorate.
Daily brushing helps fight plaque and tartar build up, just as it does in our dogs. A daily brushing routine will ensure your dog’s mouth stays healthy while keeping them out of the dentist chair.
Shockingly, only 30% of owners brush their dog’s teeth. A poor diet is the most common cause of tooth and gum disease in dogs at 42%, while 23% is attributed to brushing incorrectly or not often enough.
Without brushing, your dog could end up with serious complications leading to dental surgery and tooth distractions.
First and foremost, an unhealthy mouth can be very uncomfortable and painful for your dog. Not to mention expensive.
The average cost for treating tooth and gum disease in the UK is £186.52, and can be more than £300 in some cases.
The best method for maintaining your dog’s healthy smile is prevention rather than a cure.
It’s important to note: Never use human toothpaste for your dog’s teeth. The fluoride is toxic to both dogs and humans if ingested.
There are a wide variety of dog toothpastes you can buy in your local pet store, but personally I’m particularly concerned by the sheer volume of chemicals, flavourings and additives they contain.
If you too are conscious about what you’re putting into your dog’s body, just take a look at the ingredients list on some popular toothpastes.
You’ll often find a list of unknown and unpronounceable nasties like sodium carboxymethyicellulose, liquid paraffin and carrageenan. Some of which have been found to have a possible link to stomach cancer.
If they’re consuming these toxic ingredients on a daily basis, I really wonder what future affect they will have on my dog’s health. I’m sure you do too!
With a homemade dog toothpaste you’ll know exactly what they’re consuming. You’ll also know the ingredients are all natural and good for your dog.
All of these toothpastes can be whipped up in 10 minutes or less from ingredients you’ll find in your kitchen cupboards. And most importantly, they’ll be safe and healthy for your dog to consume every day.
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1 reduced salt chicken stock cube
2 tablespoons of baking soda
2 teaspoons of cinnamon
1.5 tablespoons of coconut oil/creamed coconut
Start by warming your coconut oil in a glass bowl over a saucepan of boiling water. This will make the oil easier to work with.
Dissolve the stock cube in a tablespoon of hot (but not boiling) water. This creates a tasty base to entice your dog. I’ve chosen a reduced salt variety to avoid any unnecessary salt in my dog’s diet. Although the standard variety will be absolutely fine if that’s all you have, as they’ll only be consuming tiny amounts each time.
Next add the baking soda to the flavoured water. This acts as an abrasive substance to tackle leftover food and plaque build-up. Lastly, throw in the cinnamon for fresh smelling breath and add the coconut oil to bind. Mix well to form a paste.
The herbal treatment
½ teaspoon of turmeric
¼ teaspoon of parsley
1 reduced salt beef stock cube
6 tablespoons of baking soda
Dissolve the stock cube in a teaspoon of hot (but not boiling) water, then add the baking soda. Mix together to form a paste.
Next add the turmeric and parsley, adding more hot water if required. The turmeric has natural whitening properties to prevent discolouration. The parsley acts as an antibacterial agent and freshens your dog’s breath. Both are completely safe for your dog.
The breath freshener
2 tablespoons of coconut oil/creamed coconut
½ teaspoon of kelp or crushed nori (seaweed)
1 reduced salt chicken stock cube
6 crushed mint leaves
1 teaspoon of cinnamon
Warm the coconut oil in a bowl over boiling water to make it more pliable. While your coconut oil warms through, dissolve the stock cube in a tablespoon of hot (but not boiling) water.
Add both your mint leaves and cinnamon to the flavoured water, both of which are great for promoting fresh breath.
Next, add your kelp or crushed nori – this is the abrasive substance that will fight plaque build-up. These seaweeds have many nutritional benefits and are said to promote good cognitive function in dogs. They also give your dog a healthy, shiny looking coat.
And lastly, add your coconut oil to the mix and stir to form a paste.
That’s it! Put your toothpaste mix in a storage container and use daily to keep your dog’s teeth clean and healthy. I recommend using a simple dog toothbrush to make brushing easier. This double sided toothbrush makes it easier to reach front and back teeth. You could also use a child’s toothbrush.
How often do you clean your dog’s teeth? Have these recipes been a hit with your dog? Let me know in the comments below…