Saturday, February 12, 2011

February is National Pet Dental Health Month

Smile wide, Smile bright
Fives smiles I see; such a sight
Healthy teeth, healthy gums
Brush pets’ teeth to keep ‘em white!
-D. Wills-Raftery

Have you brushed your pet's teeth today? While this month celebrates National Pet Dental Health, we shouldn’t need a reminder that as part of our pets’ overall care, we should be paying attention to their teeth, and be giving their chompers a brushing on a frequent basis (you know your pets’ teeth – this could be daily, weekly, monthly, bi-monthly). Your pet having strong teeth and good gums is very important. As with people, broken or rotting teeth can lead to other health issues, gum disease, irritation, discomfort, inflammation, and infection. To avoid a problem from starting, give them a little brush with some pet-friendly toothpaste. You can use either a finger brush (this is the type preferred by the FiveSibes), a standard (pet) toothbrush, a dental sponge, or pad. All of which can be purchased at any pet store.

I like to make the visit to the Hu-Mom “dentist” a fun event, so I incorporate lots of singing and praising so I have their interest (curiosity?) right from the start. Then, I use mint-flavored toothpaste as these furbabies just love the smell of mint. I will put a little spot of it on my finger and let them lick it so they believe it to be a treat! A little sneaky, I know, but they are “kids” after all. If they like it, they will brush! While brushing, I give them a light gum massage and am sure to get not only fronts, but behind the teeth as well. I get in there (and sometimes use a mini-flashlight) and take a good peek at their gumlines and check for any nasty tartar build-up, unusual discoloration, bleeding, or any holes or broken teeth. If there is a problem, it’s time to give the vet a call for further inspection. For some more points on dental care for your pet, check out Doctors Foster and Smith's Pet Education information on “Brushing Teeth and Home Dental Care.” 

Open up and say "Ahhhh!"

After we brush, the FiveSibes engage in some self-licking , as well as some furfamily-style licking of each other (to be certain that every Sibe had the same thing. Heaven knows, they better have the same scent, otherwise, they will let you know with lots of protesting "woos" of their unhappiness.) Then they are off to play, with healthy, minty-fresh teeth.

If your pet doesn’t like the flavor of mint, the toothpaste is also available in some additional tastes as well, including peanut butter, beef, salmon, and malt. Almost every flavor to please the demanding pet palate!

Here is a video from the American Veterinarian Medical Association (AVMA) on the proper technique for brushing your pet’s teeth:

There are also things like dental treats, rawhides, and toys that are “teeth friendly” to aid in helping to keep your canine companion’s teeth and gums healthy. You can check in with your own vet or with AVMA TV (American Veterinarian Medical Association’s online video network) to be sure if the treats or toys you select are safe for your pet.

Until next time, keep brushing and stay healthy!


  1. I did not know about the National Pet Dental Health Month!
    And today my mom brushed my toofies!
    Happy Saturday!
    Kisses and hugs

  2. The blog looks so festive with all the floating hearts and that cool widget at the top.

    Another wonderful PSA - brushing is a great thing to do, just don't make us floss:)

    Woos ~ Phantom, Thunder, and Ciara

  3. Thanks for sharing that video. Riley puts up a heck of a fight when I try to brush her teeth, so I gave up. But I already see she has some discoloration on her back teeth so I've made up my mind (after watching that video) to try it again. I'm going to use the technique he showed in the video to introduce it into our routine. I have a toothbrush and toothpaste for her but I don't know if I have one of those finger brushes. Anyway, we're going to give it a shot!!!

    Also, when I was clicking your link from my blog roll, it kept taking me to different a jeopardy answers website and some video website. Everyone else's blogs are working when I click on them. Don't know if you've ever run into that before or not...just thought I'd let you know.

    Elyse and Riley

  4. The hearts floating around are so cute, hehe. Great PSA, I use teeth wipes instead of a toothbrush. That's the furthest I'll go, BOL.


  5. Hi, Elyse and Riley. Yes, someone else told me that today as well from Huskytime. It did it a few times earlier for me too, I thought it was because some social media sites abbreviate my URL and give it their own shortened version. Mine is working OK now, but I hope it does not keep doing that for other. Can you relink my site to your blog roll and see if that clears it up? If not, I may have to contact Blogger to see what it's about. Thanks so much for the post and for the heads-up!

  6. National Pet Dental Health Month?! Who knew?! You pups sure are up-to-date on everything! Thanks for the info!

    LOVE the little floating hearts on your blog! It is very cool and so festive and fun! And it just exudes "Love"! What can be better than that? :->


  7. Woosers, guess we'd better get mom up to date on this stuff! Salmon toothpaste sounds yummy! She's taking her chompers to the dentist this week too, woo-hoo!

    jack & moo

  8. Kool! Time to grt brushin now!!


  9. Great information!! We just went through our best attempt at brushing a couple of days ago, but my guys (and gals) would rather chew on the toothbrush than let me brush...I am very interested in the "pads" mentioned and am going to look into them! Thanks for giving us all this info!
    Kelly & Crew
    Big Mac, Molly & Moxie

  10. wooo thats great information thanks for sharing. I broke 2 of my canines when I was a pup (had a thing about stones) so hu'mum keeps a special eye on them.