Many dog owners assume that their pet’s breath is supposed to smell bad but it can actually be a sign that something is not quite right. Bad breath can be an indication that you need to introduce a better oral health routine for your dog. However, it can also be a warning for more serious health issues.
Medical Causes of Bad Breath: A number of health problems could potentially be the root cause of your dog’s breath issues. These include:
– Dental Disease: This is the most common culprit and is often characterised by brown tartar on the teeth. This may need to be resolved via a professional cleaning to remove plaque, tartar and food build-up. If plaque and/or tartar is not to blame, diet or health issues could be a prominent factor.
– Diabetes: If you have recently noticed that your dog’s breath smells sweet rather than foul, it can be a symptom of diabetes. Other symptoms of the condition can include frequent urination and strong thirst.
– Kidney Disease: Breath that smells like urine can be symptomatic of kidney problems.
– Liver Problems: Foul-smelling breath can indicate a problem with the liver. This may also be accompanied by symptoms such as vomiting, loss of appetite and yellow-tinged corneas and/or gums.
– Respiratory Issues: Inflammation in the sinuses and nasal passages can lead to bad breath.
– Gastrointestinal Issues: If you suspect that there may be a medical reason for your dog’s bad breath, consult your vet to discuss the underlying issues that may be at fault. He or she can carry out tests to confirm the root cause of the problem.
Dietary Causes of Bad Breath: A meat-rich diet can contribute to bad breath. A wet diet can also encourage food to become stuck between the teeth. Plaque and bacteria can then build up in the mouth.
Oral Health Tips for Your Dog: These tips can go a long way towards improving your dog’s oral health-
– Make sure that your dog receives regular dental check-ups. This can remove plaque and tartar and is crucial for keeping track of your dog’s oral health. Regular physical check-ups can also keep check of medical conditions that may be contributing to bad breath.
– Brush your dog’s teeth on a daily basis. This should be done with a toothpaste that is specifically designed for dogs; do not use human toothpaste as this is not suitable and can cause stomach upsets. If your dog is not receptive to having their teeth cleaned, professional cleanings may be a better alternative.
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– Chewable dental toys are a good way to keep your dog’s teeth clean through chewing. Do not use bones for this; these can splinter and cause damage and obstructions in the intestines.
– Doggy dental treats can improve the smell of your dog’s breath and can help to prevent excessive plaque build-up.
(This post was written by Animed Direct, a leading provider of pet medicines and pet care products.)