What if there was a way to avoid the annual trip to the vet to get your dog's teeth cleaned? What if I told you that there is, and you can do it at home with nothing artificial?
Statistics from the American Veterinary Dental Society (AVDS), found that 70% of cats and 80% of dogs suffer from some form of dental issue by the time they are 3 years old. The AVDS say thatmost dental diseases are entirely preventable, and there are some simple at-home remedies that you can do yourself.
We are huge fans of raw meaty bones here at FurFresh. Raw meaty bones and an excellent calcium source, boredom buster and they're also a fantastic way of naturally removing plaque from teeth. There are a few important rules to follow when choosing fresh bones for your dog to chew:
- The first is to always choose raw, never cooked. Why? Cooked bones can splinter and get stuck or even perforate the stomach and intestines leading to a very rushed trip to the vet. Human grade raw bones can be easily sourced from your local butcher and they're very affordable.
- The second rule is to choose the right size bone. There is a misconception that the larger the bone, the better. Often a large beef leg bone can result in a dog cracking a tooth from overenthusiastic chewing on a very hard to manage bone. This will again land you back at the vets paying hundreds, if not thousands of dollars to get it fixed. Instead of bones from large animals, opt for medium sized animals like sheep or goat. These bones will still be large and hard enough to occupy for 30 minutes plus without being so hard so as to cause damage. Give raw meaty bones 1-2 times per week.
Yes, it's probably not high on your fun-list for the weekend, but vets do recommend that you brush your dog's teeth on a regular basis. A simple homemade recipe that we use (as it shares some of the ingredients from our Complete Meal Balancer!). Simply mix 1 cup organic coconut oil (warm to soften), 1 tsp organic turmeric, 1/2 tsp organic Sea Kelp, 1/4 tsp organic dried Parsley. You can use a very soft baby toothbrush to apply to your dog's teeth, but we find the easiest way is with your index finger. Be warned - the turmeric will stain your skin slightly so wash off as quickly as possible in warm soapy water.
Yes, there are commercially available dental cleaning treats and kibble on the market. Do as you wish, all I will say is to turn over the back of that pack and read the label to make sure you're comfortable. As an alternative, you can make your own healthy dental chews at home! Here's a link to our favourite and all-natural recipe.
Lastly, but certainly not least is making the switch to a minimally processed raw diet, if you haven't already. Many commercial, and some homemade raw diets have recipes for mince meat. Whilst mince and patty form raw food is most certainly a better choice than its highly processed dried counterparts, your dog will be missing out on the gum and teeth health benefits that whole chunks of meat can provide. That's why we never use mince and choose chunks of whole fillet raw whole food.
What are your tips for keeping your dog's teeth clean naturally? Tag us on Instagram or Facebook so we can see your creations.
Yours in good health,