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Old 07-16-2008, 01:31 PM
 
Location: Washington, D.C.
325 posts, read 369,548 times
Reputation: 95

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I'm curious what everyone has found to be the best way to keep their dog's teeth clean. I have a 5 year old lab who does not like having her teeth brushed (though we try) so I was looking for some other tips. We give her bones which she loves and they seem to help and I want to try a dental treat like bright bites. Does anyone use these? The vet has not mentioned a problem with her teeth but I'd still love some ideas.
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Old 07-16-2008, 02:14 PM
 
Location: Swamps of Florida
3,423 posts, read 6,720,946 times
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My dogs eat raw and part of that are raw bones, best toothbrush!
I've never ever had their teeth cleaned, they are white and sparkly! My female is 4.5 and my male is 5!
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Old 07-16-2008, 02:21 PM
 
Location: Living on 10 acres in Oklahoma
1,188 posts, read 3,385,717 times
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We have two large dogs that we have worked with to become comfortable with touch and opening their mouths, extra. Treat training is always a plus. We use a human plaque scraper (bought in the dental area of stores) and I scrap their teeth about once a week. Once you remove the plaque it is important to swipe it on a tissue or napkin. You don't want them swallowing it and clogging up their heart valves. As I scrap...I give them small little treats here and there for being good and letting me handle their mouths. This is what a vet friend of ours suggested we do to avoid having dental cleaning at our vet. We don't want to put our dogs under for the procedure. After I scrap their teeth, I then brush them with beef flavored toothpaste (bought at PeatSmart~which they love) and then I follow it up by giving them a dental bone later that day. I tried a mint flavor toothpaste for dogs and they totally hated it. As I brush their teeth, I allow them to lick the toothpaste here and there so it seems fun in between me brushing. They get lots of praise. It took one of my dogs a while to come around. It isn't his favorite event...but he sure likes to hear "good boy" and get a treat!
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Old 07-16-2008, 03:45 PM
 
20,797 posts, read 32,833,203 times
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We buy bones at the grocery store, real bones, in the meat department. They sell them for around $1.00 for 2 or 3 of them. Our dog LOVES to chew on them, they last a long time and she has very white, clean teeth.
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Old 07-16-2008, 05:00 PM
 
7,081 posts, read 24,769,702 times
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If your dog doesn't take to dog toothbrushes, you can do for them what peole do for human babies: get some gauze from the drugstore and wind it around a finger. Then, with or without toothpaste, you can simply 'scrub' your dog's teeth with your gauze covered finger.
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Old 07-17-2008, 08:38 AM
 
Location: Washington, D.C.
325 posts, read 369,548 times
Reputation: 95
Thanks for all the suggestions. Using gauze instead of a toothbrush sounds like a good idea. She might take to that more easily. I would like to hold off on a professional cleaning for as long as possible. I also have concerns with having her put under for the procedure. We give her bones and I think that has helped a lot. No one mentioned giving dental treats. Do they work? The one that I mentioned is supposed to help with plaque and tartar so it sounds like it would be really helpful.
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Old 07-17-2008, 05:34 PM
 
3,730 posts, read 8,181,101 times
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You could also try the rubber finger toothbrushes, less invasive than some of the dog toothbrushes.
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Old 07-18-2008, 08:21 PM
 
315 posts, read 604,140 times
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Raw feeder here and the bones do the tick for my dogs also.
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Old 07-18-2008, 09:05 PM
 
Location: Washington state
7,185 posts, read 5,632,664 times
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I give our youngest pug Nylabones, the bristles raised during the chewing helps with tartar and such. I tried the finger brush thing, even got some beef flavored doggie toothpaste...she was having none of it.
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Old 07-22-2008, 09:17 PM
 
Location: Washington, D.C.
325 posts, read 369,548 times
Reputation: 95
I've seen the finger brushes at the store but we haven't tried it. I'll keep those in mind too to try out. Hopefully the bones and bright bites will be a good supplement and she gets used to the brushing!
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