Dental care for dogs is especially important because dogs often live with serious dental problems for years. They cannot communicate their chronic tooth pain. Regularly cleaning and checking out your pup’s mouth will keep them from suffering in silence. Having some safe homemade dog toothpaste on hand can be a big help too.
If your pup doesn’t immediately take to having their teeth brushed, only subject them to it once a week at first. Then, increase to a few days a week, and work up to doing it every day. Give them positive reinforcement, like extra playtime or treats, when they let you brush their teeth.
One thing to remember is that you absolutely cannot use human toothpaste for dogs. There is the risk that your pup will swallow it. Human toothpaste contains fluoride, which can be deadly to animals if consumed.
But, do you really have to buy doggie toothpaste in order to freshen up your dog’s stinky breath and keep him healthy and free of tooth pain? No, you can make your own at home! Here are some ideas for how to make your own safe homemade dog toothpaste:
1. Tasty Meat-Flavored Tooth Cleanser
You probably wouldn’t want your toothpaste tasting like beef, but dogs have a meatier palate! Here is a recipe for a meaty, and effective, dog-friendly toothpaste:
- 6 tablespoons baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 cube of beef bouillon – or vegetable bouillon
- 1 teaspoon dried or fresh parsley
- 1 teaspoon water
In a small bowl, thoroughly mix all the ingredients together to make a paste. Add more water if necessary. Store in an airtight container and use daily.
2. Turmeric Tooth Delight
This recipe uses some unexpected ingredients, but they all have a purpose.
- 1 cup unrefined virgin coconut oil
- 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
- 1/2 teaspoon kelp
- 1/8 teaspoon dried parsley flakes
Coconut oil provides healthy fat that enables easier absorption of the ingredients in the toothpaste. Turmeric is a natural tooth-whitener that helps to prevent plaque buildup.
Parsley is a natural deodorizer that is also anti-bacterial. It is also anti-inflammatory, so it will soothe your doggie’s gums. And, kelp is an anti-bacterial plaque remover that provides helpful chlorophyll and minerals.
If the coconut oil is hard, place it in a hot water bath to make it softer and easier to mix with the other ingredients. Add the remaining ingredients and mix well, then store in the refrigerator.
Remember to brush your puppy’s teeth every day! Proper dental care for dogs starts there. Annual visits to the vet are also important. Your vet can also give you some recommendations on good dental hygiene treats or chews for your pup. They can even help you create a special “dental care diet” specific to your dog’s needs!