My pug is 4 years old. He started having bad breath a few months ago. He eats the High Prairie Canine Formula from the "Taste of the Wild" product daily, and does not eat table food. I have tried Greenies, and they do seem to help. However, this product is not cheap.
I've thought about brushing his teeth, but I would like to get more feedback.
Does anyone have any advice on what I can do to improve my little guy's breath?
The bad breath is probably coming from plaque, tartar and probably the start of gingivitis which can become a problem for dogs if their mouths are left unattended as early as age 2 or 3.
Have you had a good look into his mouth to see if there are any fractures or abscesses...bleeding gums? If so, a vet visit is warranted. Many pugs and bulldogs have crowded mouths, impacted teeth, malocclusion and retained teeth which can cause various problems for them. Fractures and broken teeth are very common and many pet owners don't even know they have occurred unless the pet stops eating from the pain and infection.
If you did not brush your teeth for 4 years...what would your mouth and breath smell like? Probably not great either.
I am a total teeth cleaning freak for my two pugs because I know that, as with people, a rotten mouth leads to a host of infections and organ and heart problems as the pet ages. A well tended pet mouth can add years of quality life.
Each of my pugs get a thorough cleaning after dinner every single day. Yes, it takes about 30 mins to do both in addition to nose roll and eye med ministrations, so fair bit of time involved for sure.
I start with a brushing, then a wipe through the mouth with a gauze pad soaked in Healthy Mouth water additive, and then finally, another damp gauze cleaning with Healthy Mouth spray applied to the gauze. Afterwards their teeth and gums are super clean no offensive breath odor. Both my dogs have very white teeth and no stinky mouth.
I buy Oral B infant toothbrushes from the drug store...not pet toothbrushes which are usually not the best quality and no doubt contain BPA. The Oral B infant brushes are small, wide headed and very soft and do not scrape or irritate the gums and most brands (with exception of Colgate I believe) are BPA free. The way I brush is to place my finger on the outside of the head of the brush and guide it into the mouth and along their teeth that way so that my finger moves the brush along and around the teeth. This way I can feel where I am going with the brush. I spend a fair bit of time on the back teeth.
The toothpaste I use (pea sized amount for each side of mouth is "Pet Smile Professional Pet Toothpaste" for one pug and "CET" Vanilla Mint for the other. The ingredients are probably not the healthiest in any pet toothpaste, but trust me if you want to get inside your pug's mouth you absolutely need something that they find very palatable and tasty....so you have to weigh the ingredients of the products to the overall health benefits of brushing their teeth period.
Pet Smile toothpaste can be ordered online and is the only VOHC approved pet toothpaste. CET can be bought through most vets and through pet supply companies online. I order Pet Smile toothpaste through Amazon and the cost is pretty much the same and shipping is fast. About $25 a tube, but the tube is very large with a flip top lid and should last one dog at least 4 months.
Healthy Mouth products are excellent and natural and can be purchased through some vets, animal dental specialists or online through the Healthy Mouth websites.
Pet Smile and Healthy Mouth products are not cheap, but you don't need to use a lot....so a little does go a long way with small dogs.
So, as one who has seen what a bit of time and patience can accomplish, my best advice to you is don't delay and to start brushing now...and don't stop or give up on it. Your little buddy will thank you for it in the long term by giving you extra years of love. If you leave his mouth, things may get worse in a short time resulting in bleeding gums, rotten teeth and painful abscesses.
A raw diet is optimal and most dental chews do little to provide any type of true beneficial oral cleaning, but add a lot of unwanted ingredients and calories into your dog's diet. There is no substitute for brushing.
Good luck and happy brushing....a little time and patience goes a very long way when it comes to your dog's healthy mouth.
Last edited by West Coast Pugs; 05-28-2015 at 11:36 PM.
Hello & to the village! I'd get him checked out at your vet first. He may have a bad tooth or beginning gingivitis. I use raw beef bones and Nylabones for Tinker to keep her teeth clean. Please let us know what you find out. Glad to have you here.
Jackie,Mom to Robbie & Stacy my human children and Tinker my furkid.
Toby just had a dental and his breath is smelling so much better!
Christa, Mom to Toby, Kelsey, Summer & Ellie Mae
missing Riley and Roxy, who are at the bridge
and my precious Bella 11-2-07 - 05-6-12
Thank you, West Coast Pugs, for all the info. I will be sure to make efforts in caring for my little guy's teeth. My pug and I thank you!
I will report back with feedback!
Thank you for the welcome, Jackie! I will be sure to report back.