Although you routinely schedule comprehensive dental cleanings for your furry pal, their breath still develops a rank odor between cleanings. If you practiced dental hygiene only when you visited your dentist twice a year, your breath would be in the same rough shape. Help your pet out—and enjoy their kisses—by implementing an at-home dental care routine. While twice-daily toothbrushing is the gold standard at-home dental care for pets, other methods can boost their oral health. Banish bad breath and plaque accumulation with the daily use of proven dental-care products. 

When choosing the most effective products, always look for the Veterinary Oral Health Council’s (VOHC) seal of approval. These approved products have demonstrated their ability to slow plaque and tartar buildup, and improve pets’ oral health. Some of our favorite VOHC-approved dental products are listed below—add them to your shopping list to keep your furry friend’s mouth healthy and kissably fresh.     

#1: Add a plaque-fighting powder to your pet’s food

Food supplements are a great way to reduce plaque accumulation in your pet. Only a few hours after a meal, plaque will begin to form on your pet’s teeth, creating a gummy coating that can be removed with a food supplement before hardening into tartar. Food additives typically come in granular form and can be sprinkled on your pet’s wet or dry food to help battle plaque formation. Cats also enjoy this easy-to-use dental product. 

ProDen PlaqueOff Powder is formulated from specially selected algae for maximum efficacy, and is proven to work against plaque and tartar.

#2: Pair a water additive with your pet’s drinking water

Water additives are as palatable as food additives when you are choosing a dental-health product for your pet. However, some pets are picky about flavorings in their water, especially if they’re introduced suddenly, so keep a close eye on your furry pal’s water intake when incorporating a water additive. 

With only a small amount of a plaque-battling additive in your pet’s water, you can keep their breath fresh and their mouth healthy. An excellent product line of water additives is called healthymouth, whose 46 dental-health products are all VOHC-approved to slow plaque or tartar accumulation in dogs, cats, or horses. These water additives are clinically proven to reduce plaque by almost 75%, and they provide continuous protection against oral-bacteria accumulation. 

#3: Use dental wipes or gel to keep your pet’s teeth clean

Some pets simply won’t tolerate a toothbrush’s brushing action, but there is still hope for an at-home dental care plan—instead, try a dental wipe or topical gel to battle plaque and bacteria. Wipes rub against the cheek-side surface of your pet’s teeth, removing bacteria and plaque. Topical gels, which are applied after the final meal of the day, provide a protective coating to the teeth and gums, helping combat gingivitis, stomatitis, and other forms of oral inflammation and disease.

#4: Give your pet veterinary-approved chews and treats

Finding the ideal chew for your four-legged friend, especially those power chewers who demolish a treat in a few seconds, is tough enough. Finding a chew that provides enrichment and dental health benefits can be more difficult, so stick with pet-safe chew toy options and stay away from those that are a fractured tooth waiting to happen.

Some of the more common and easily accessible chews that ward off dental disease are Greenies, Milk-Bone Brushing Chews, WHIMZEES, and C.E.T. chews. These products are formulated with special ingredients and unique shapes to battle oral bacteria and scrub away plaque before it hardens into tartar.

#5: Brush with the best when choosing your pet’s toothbrush and toothpaste

Although you may be tempted to steal your child’s old toothbrush and tasty toothpaste for your pet’s smaller mouth, avoid using human toothpaste on pets. Since your pet will swallow the toothpaste instead of spitting it out, the fluoride found in toothpaste can be hazardous. Instead, search for a pet-friendly option, such as C.E.T. enzymatic toothpaste, which comes in five delicious flavors. While you can still use your child’s toothbrush to brush your pet’s teeth, a finger brush also works for tiny mouths and hard-to-reach places. Whatever brush you choose, ensure you use a pet-safe toothpaste and strive for twice-daily brushing.

Are you struggling to find the ideal dental-health product for your furry pal? Talk to our Animal Dental Clinic team about the best options for your pet. At-home dental care is our passion! Give us a call for personalized recommendations for your pet.