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An at-home oral healthcare program is important to maintain the health of your pet’s teeth and help prevent future periodontal disease. Here are recommendations for an ideal home care program (in order of importance):
1. Brushing - Brushing your pet’s teeth is the single best way to help prevent dental disease. Daily brushing is best! It is usually a very easy and fun if your pet is appropriately conditioned to this procedure. First pick a soft-bristled, or finger toothbrush. Next, get toothpaste from your veterinarian. Do not use human toothpaste because it has detergents that should not be swallowed.
When starting to work on brushing your pet’s teeth, remember to treat them with a high value treat after they have accepted each handling step! Also, consider doing their brushing prior to a meal so they start to associate the fact that they had their face/mouth touched and then received a treat and dinner.
2. OraVet Sealant - Weekly application of a waxy-like substance that helps to prevent plaque accumulation. For many people it is easier to apply this with your finger instead of the application tip.
Video Demonstration: OraVet Sealant
3. Dental Diet - Specific diets are available if you pet doesn’t have any dietary restrictions. They are available by veterinary prescription. This can be used as a sole diet or works really well as treats! Please let us know if you are interested in a sample of the two we recommend: Hills T/D and Purina D/H.
4. Healthy Mouth Water Additive - This is the only water additive that has been clinically proven to prevent plaque and is a Veterinary Oral Health Council (VOHC) accepted product. It contains 100% human grade ingredients, is free of all synthetic, artificial ingredients, alcohol and contains NO calories, fat, sugar or sodium. The cost is as little as $0.15/day/pet. The safe, effective, highly palatable concentrate formula (backed by a 100% satisfaction refund policy) is added to your dog's daily drinking water. We conveniently stock this product at our hospitals at the same price as you can find online.
5. Other VOHC Dental Products - A variety of dental chews, sprays, or water additives are also available. Please pick VOHC approved products by viewing their list at www.vohc.org.