There are some things that come with dog ownership that are just inherent guarantees. For example, there will most likely be fur and dog hair in places where you didn’t think it was possible. Another example is that you’ll probably never eat alone again since your good boy or good girl will be politely sitting at your feet, waiting and hoping for a piece of whatever it is you’re eating. Lastly, you’re probably going to get slobbered on during playtime or after you have a snack. In the latter scenario, you might notice something a little gross - stinky dog breath coming out of your furbaby’s mouth.
Whether your dog is a small lap dog or a big, energetic baby, stinky dog breath can make spending time with them a little less pleasant. But what are the contributing factors to a dog with bad breath, and what can you do about it? There are all kinds of things that you can do to get rid of smelly dog breath, some are easy, and some are a little more difficult and expensive. Let’s take a look at some causes and solutions to keep your four-legged velociraptor’s mouth smelling fresh!
Causes of Stinky Dog Breath
Poor or Improper Diet
Your dog's breath smells could also be a result of their current diet. Fur babies who eat a lot of wet food or even some table scraps are more likely to have stinky dog breath because these foods are typically softer and, as a result, easier to get stuck in between their teeth and gums. Food remnants sticking in between teeth is fairly common since your puppy doesn’t floss twice a day like humans, which leads us to our next reason for why your dog's breath smells…
Poor Dental Hygiene
Just like a regular human, a dog with bad breath needs to take care of its teeth to prevent bad breath. When dogs eat, the bits of pieces of food particles can get trapped in their teeth and gums, just like humans. The trapped food becomes a gross breeding ground for bacteria build-up which will definitely contribute to smelly dog breath. Of course, the problems of poor dental hygiene don’t stop there. Over time, trapped food could become plaque, which then hardens into tartar. Tartar will eventually cause gum disease and tooth decay. Like a compounding snowball of smelliness, these kinds of dental issues could all be symptoms of your dog's breath smells.
Other Medical Issues
In some extreme cases, stinky dog breath can be a sign of an underlying medical issue. For example, like humans, dogs with kidney disease may have breath that smells like ammonia, while dogs with diabetes may have sweet-smelling breath. Infections in the mouth or respiratory system can also cause bad breath in dogs. Of course, a dog with bad breath should not be the sole reason for a vet visit. If the bad breath is chronic or if there are other symptoms present, a vet visit could be warranted.
Solutions for Stinky Dog Breath
Brush Your Fur Child’s Teeth
One of the most effective ways to prevent stinky dog breath is to brush your dog's teeth regularly. Ideally, you should brush your dog's teeth every day, but even a few times a week can make a big difference. Use a dog-friendly toothbrush and toothpaste, which you can find at most pet stores. You can also give your dog dental chews or toys to help keep their teeth clean.
Change The Good Boy’s (or Girl’s) Diet
If your dog's breath smells are caused by their diet, changing what they eat can help. Try looking for dog food that is specifically formulated to promote dental health. Avoid giving your dog table scraps or excessive treats, and try feeding your little dinosaur dry kibble instead of wet food. Additionally, you can try giving your pretty pooch a high-quality dog chew like a bully stick or a natural dog bone treat after their meal to help them clean their teeth and gums. These quality chews act like a toothpick to help clean off any food residue that might be stuck in between your big pup’s teeth.
Give Your Dog Plenty of Water
Sometimes, our dog's breath smells for the same reason our breath smells - lack of hydration. Dehydration in dogs and humans alike can be a cause for bad breath; dogs can get “cotton mouth,” too! Providing your dog with fresh, clean water at all times can help prevent bad breath. Additionally, drinking fresh and clean water can help flush out food particles and bacteria from your dog's mouth. Giving your dog ready access to fresh water won’t just help their bad breath, but it’s a good practice for their overall health.
Use Breath Freshening Products
There are a variety of products available that are designed to freshen your dog's breath. These include dental sprays, high-quality dog chews, and even breath mints. Be sure to choose products that are specifically formulated for dogs and follow the instructions carefully. Using quality chews can double as a treat and as a cleaning chew product!
Don't Ignore Other Dental Issues
A dog with bad breath is typically a common problem that can be easily remedied. However, if you notice that your dog has signs of dental issues (such as bleeding gums or loose teeth), it is very important to address those issues. Don’t ignore dental problems! These issues can lead to more serious health problems if left untreated.
Visit the Vet
Keep an eye on your dog's overall health and behavior to see if they're showing any other signs of illness or discomfort. If your dog's bad breath persists despite your best efforts, it's a good idea to take them to the vet. Your vet can examine your dog's mouth and teeth to check for signs of dental disease or other medical issues. They may recommend a professional dental cleaning or other treatments to address the problem. It's possible that there is an underlying medical issue that needs to be addressed. Having your veterinarian check your dog's mouth and teeth for signs of dental disease or other medical issues is a great maintenance item for any doctor's visit. Your vet can recommend a treatment plan to address any underlying health issues that may be contributing to your dog's bad breath.
Improving your four-legged child’s breath may take some time and effort, especially if it’s caused by a health issue or has been persistent or chronic. Be patient and consistent in your efforts to improve your dog's dental hygiene and overall health. With time and effort, you can help your big fur baby have fresher, healthier breath!
Bully Bunches’ Dental Health Month
Stinky dog breath can be unpleasant for both you and your furry friend. Fortunately, there are a variety of steps and options that you can take to address the problem. By focusing on your dog's dental hygiene, diet, and overall health, you can help keep their breath fresh and their mouth healthy.
At Bully Bunches, we are dedicated to providing the best treats for the best furry boys and girls! Our premium quality bully sticks and other dog chews are designed to help keep your dog’s mouth clean and provide them with a delicious treat at the same time!