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Tartar of dogs: understand its causes and risks and know how to treat

You love receiving licks of your dog, isn’t it? This is one of the greatest expressions of love and affection he has for you. However, after a lick, you may experience quite unpleasant bad breath. This is probably another evident case of dog tartar!

As with us humans, our dogs can also develop tartar, resulting in gingivitis that causes bad breath that can develop into other problems such as endocarditis and The death.

Yes, tartar can also be fatal for your dog.

To avoid these problems, maintaining our pet’s oral hygiene is always essential. How about starting by learning more about the prevention and treatment of dog tartar?

Find out what are the causes of this problem, its greatest risks and the most important forms of treatment and prevention for this problem.

Tartar of dogs: What is it and what are the main causes?

As in humans, the tartar of dogs is nothing more than the formation of a bacterial plaque resulting from the accumulation of food scraps. The case is even worse when we offer our friends inappropriate foods, such as sweets and other treats.

These foods help in the formation of bacterial plaque, mainly because it is more easily retained in the dental arch and also because it does not generate friction. Even if the dog is offered only dry food, specific dog biscuits and snacks capable of “cleaning” the teeth, it will often not be enough and tartar will appear.

In our case we brush our teeth daily (more than once a day), but we don’t do it with our pets, thus increasing the occurrences of this problem.

There is a genetic predisposition for this eventuality, we observed that small dogs are more susceptible. It is also worth mentioning that brachycephalics (French bulldog, shih tzu and pug, for example) have a greater tendency to present the condition, as well as dogs that still have deciduous teeth (milk teeth), which lead to a greater predisposition to tartar.

The risks of dog tartar

Tartar is represented by an accumulation of bacteria and other sediment on the teeth, affecting the visual aspect of the dogs’ mouths, with the teeth becoming dirty and “less white”.

But this is the least of the problems, because as soon as the tartar progresses, the bacteria begin to consume the gums, increasing the occurrences of periodontal disease and gingivitis, responsible for causing pain and difficulty in chewing.

In even more serious cases, the bacteria can enter the animal’s bloodstream, reaching the heart, kidneys and liver, leading to endocarditis, kidney, liver, lung and many other more serious diseases, which can even cause death. of the dog.

How do I identify tartar on my dog?

One of the first symptoms that indicate the tartar of dogs is bad breath. Initially, changes in the color of the teeth are not so visible, but the presence and an unpleasant breath usually indicates that the tartar is accumulating.

In the early stages, the dog’s teeth affected by tartar start to turn yellow and turn brown. In addition, tartar bacteria begin to push the gum, making it more red and inflamed. In all cases they cause gingivitis that are responsible for bad breath.

In addition, because it can cause pain in teeth and gums, the tartar of dogs can be identified when the animal starts to eat less, avoiding chewing. These symptoms may be indicative of pain in the teeth resulting from tartar.

My dog ​​has tartar, what to do?

Did you notice that your dog has bad breath and his teeth are more yellow or brown? Possibly it is another case of dog tartar. But remember, you will not be responsible for closing this prognosis, but a Veterinarian.

Therefore, if your dog shows signs of tartar the most important thing is to take him to a consultation with your veterinarian. This professional will be responsible for identifying the degree of tartar in your dog, thus indicating the best treatment.

Most of the time, the tartar of dogs will have an indication of periodontal treatment.

In this treatment, total tartar removal will be performed. This procedure is usually a little time consuming and laborious, mainly because it requires general anesthesia from the dog. It also tends to be relatively expensive, mainly because it requires exams and preparatory treatments.

When performing this treatment, the Veterinarian will remove the dog’s gums to make a complete cleaning, as it will be through the gums that the bacteria will have access to the bloodstream, to, consequently, reach other organs of the dog.

In order not to reach this point, the adoption of preventive methods, based on oral hygiene, are essential, as they prevent more serious occurrences of dog tartar.

Prevention of dog tartar

We need to be aware that, in the vast majority of cases, it is very difficult to completely prevent the formation of dog tartar. What we can (and should) do is to pay attention to postponing or, at least, alleviating the seriousness of this problem.

Therefore, it is worth following some preventive measures so that tartar in dogs is not a serious problem in the health of your pet. The main preventive measures are:

  • Brush the dog’s teeth every day or at least 3 times a week. But remember to use toothpaste suitable for dogs;
  • Offer your dog only products that have the texture and size appropriate for your dog’s breed and / or size. Also choose to always offer better quality rations to your friend; It is worth remembering that there are specific products on the market for small breeds that contain additives that help delay the appearance of tartar.
  • Offer your dog specific biscuits that help prevent tartar. There are also rations and even “mouthwashes” that help prevent this problem;
  • If your pet still has milk teeth, it is worth inquiring with the Veterinarian about the possibility of extracting them;
  • Take your dog for regular check-ups and consultations to assess his oral health.

Finally, it is worth remembering: Never look for homemade solutions to end or prevent dog tartar, always look for a Veterinarian, after all it will be he who will tell you if it is necessary the surgery the tartar cleaning procedure or any other method.

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