Do your pet’s doggy kisses leave you gagging? If so, your dog may need dental care. Bad breath is often a sign of dental issues in dogs. Since Fido can’t tell you if his teeth hurt, it’s up to you to watch for potential signs of dental issues. Below, a Bucks County, PA vet discusses doggy dental care.

Common Dental Issues

Man’s Best Friend can develop a wide variety of dental troubles, such as loose, broken, or misaligned teeth; infections; abscesses; and gum disease. These issues can be very painful, and are very detrimental to your pup’s health and well-being!


As mentioned above, bad breath is one of the most common signs of doggy dental woes. Some other symptoms include excessive, bloody, or ropy drool; lack of appetite; reduced interest in playing and chewing; visible tartar buildup; bleeding gums; and, of course, crankiness. Fido may also not want his mouth touched if his teeth hurt.

Veterinary Care

Dogs should have their teeth checked by a vet at least once a year. If your pet has visible tartar buildup, he may need a good deep cleaning. This will remove that unsightly gunk, reduce inflammation, and fight bacteria. Other problems will be handled on a case-by-case basis. Keep in mind that Fido’s smile isn’t a priority with doggy dental care: the focus is on issues that cause pain or health problems.

Gum Disease

Did you know that up to 80 percent of adult dogs have gum disease? This is a major concern because, left untreated, the infection can move from Fido’s gums to his vital organs, and can cause or contribute to some very serious medical issues, such as heart disease. Ask your vet for more information.

Home Care

Brushing your furry pal’s teeth is a great way to keep his mouth healthy. To get your pooch used to the process, start by just gently rubbing his teeth and gums with your finger. Then, you can slowly incorporate pet toothpaste and a doggy toothbrush. If Fido isn’t having it, ask your vet for recommendations about dental-formula kibble, treats, and chews. These can also reduce plaque and tartar, helping keep your pup’s teeth clean and healthy. Also, make sure Fido always has fresh water, and plenty of chew toys.

Do you know or suspect that your dog has dental trouble? Call us, your Bucks County, PA animal clinic, anytime!