Natural Veterinary Dental Care
Pet owners know that their four-legged best friends have teeth,
but usually do little to keep them healthy. The mouth is the entrance point of food into
the body. It is important to keep your pet's teeth and gums clean and strong.
Examining the teeth monthly is helpful. Most dogs and cats are
happy to let their owners peek inside the mouth to look at the teeth. First, look at the
face. One side should be the same as the other. Note abnormal
swellings. When looking at the head, feel the glands under your pet's neck. Both should be
the same size. Next, raise the lips and look at the teeth and gums. Note any areas of
inflammation (redness), swelling, or broken teeth. Cats are especially prone to painful
cavities which occur at the gumline. Finally, if you feel courageous, take a whiff of your pet's breath. If it doesn't smell
like roses, a trip to the veterinarian is in order.
Home dental preventative care is the best gift you can give your dog. If
daily brushing is not performed, plaque will form at the area where the gum meets the
tooth. In time, plaque will attract calcium salts and calculus forms. The plaque and
calculus irritates the gum tissue leading to gingivitis and periodontitis. Gingivitis, if
treated early, can be cured. Periodontitis can only be controlled, not cured.
Daily brushing is the key to dental home care. Brushing can be easy if you take a clean
towel, wrap it around your finger, and gently rub around the gumline. The upper teeth
attract the most plaque, so spend the most time there. Pet toothpastes and
toothbrushes are available at
your veterinarian's office. Natural human toothpastes can also be used.
General natural remedies are useful for animal dental care. As
with all medical recommendations, they should be checked with your veterinarian before
giving them to your pet.
|Vitamin C: used to decrease swelling, aid in the care of
periodontal disease, and decrease pain|
|Myrrh: soothes inflamed gum tissues. Can be applied with a q-tip
when mixed with distilled water|
|Echinacea: helpful in periodontal therapy|
|Arnica: can be given before and after oral surgery|
|Calendula Lotion: can be used to soothe ulcers in the mouth and
|Fragraria: may be helpful in preventing the buildup of tartar given
every other month|
|Chamonilla: can be used to decrease puppy and kitten teething as
well as chewing on furniture|
|Hypericum: decrease oral pain|