We all love our furry buddies, but we don’t always do right by them. Dental health is important for dogs, yet so few of them get treatment. Dogs can develop some of the same oral health issues as we do.

Dogs also need some of the same types of dental care as we do, such as brushing teeth and going in for cleanings. There are also some treatments specific to dogs.

How much dental care does your dog need, though? How often should dogs get their teeth cleaned? I’ll answer those questions and more here.


Anesthesia and Safety

The simple answer for how to clean a dog’s mouth is anesthesia. Many pet owners have concerns about senior dogs and anesthesia, which is often used for teeth cleaning. This is understandable, given that things do sometimes go wrong and senior dog health is often fragile.

However, the risk tends to be overstated. Even in older dogs and dogs in poorer health, the risk of death is two percent at most. The truth is that you’re putting your dog at a bigger risk by foregoing anesthesia for a dental exam.

Without anesthesia, dentists can’t do a thorough examination of your dog’s mouth. This makes it much easier to miss serious issues that can spread to other systems of the body.

If these issues start to affect the heart or other muscles, for example, it could lower their energy levels or flexibility. You might not be able to enjoy walks with your buddy as much.


Blood Work

Your dog’s health, and whether or not they need a dental cleaning, is partly decided by bloodwork. Vets often take blood during check-ups.

Blood work in humans can determine if we have heart disease, cancer, certain autoimmune disorders, and more. This works in animals, as well.

Humans and dogs share around 85% of their genes, so it makes sense that we’d be afflicted by the same diseases. We also share a lot of our genes with cats, and mice, which is why we so often test medicines on mice.


Brush Their Teeth

There are also home remedies to clean dogs’ teeth. Brushing their teeth might feel a little awkward at first, but both you and your dog will get used to it.

One thing to remember when brushing a dog’s teeth is that you can’t use human toothpaste. Some of the ingredients often used in our toothpaste are poisonous to dogs.

You can find plenty of canine toothpaste online. I also encourage you to give them dental health toys for natural dog teeth cleaning. The Playology dental toys in my store, for instance, have a specialized design that cleans a dog’s teeth as they play.


How Often Should Dogs Get Their Teeth Cleaned?

How often should dogs get their teeth cleaned? The best advice is to consult your veterinarian. Like humans, each dog has different medical needs, so how often your dog’s teeth should get cleaned will differ from some other dogs.

You can learn more about senior pet health on my blog at Pawtology.com. You can also find plenty of products for your senior pet in the store.