After each session, reward your dog with treats and praise. For the next few days – after your pet has become comfortable with this activity – place a small amount of the toothpaste on your finger and let your pet sample the flavour.
Next, introduce your pet to a pet toothbrush or finger brush.
Put a pea-sized amount of toothpaste that has been specially formulated for dogs on the brush. Gently raise your dog’s upper lip and place the brush against an upper tooth.
With a slow circular motion, gently brush only that tooth and the adjoining gum line.
Each day gradually increase the number of teeth brushed. But go slowly, don’t continue beyond your pet’s point of comfort.
Build up to 30 seconds of brushing per side.
The easiest way in is to go straight, pushing the brush gently from front to back along the gumline, like this. Then add in the gentle circular motion.
After each session reward your pet with a treat and lots of praise.
Brushing should be done daily but missing 1-2 days per week would not be a big concern.
For more information on dog toothpaste, dog toothbrushes and dental disease in dogs – prevention and cure – visit Dental Care and Your Pet.
You can find more useful videos and advice on dog toothpaste, dog toothbrushes and dental disease in dogs on our Advice page.
What kind of toothpaste and toothbrush should you use on a dog?
Always use a canine-approved toothpaste. Dog toothpaste is meaty rather than minty flavoured, so it tastes great to dogs.
If your dog likes the taste, they are much more likely to enjoy having their teeth brushed – and this makes your job a lot easier!
Never use human toothpaste! The fluoride in them can be poisonous to dogs.
Dog toothbrushes have longer handles and softer bristles than most human brushes. They come in various sizes. So choose one that is the right size for your dog.
Pop into your local branch and we can help you choose the right size for your dog.
How often should you brush a dog’s teeth?
We recommend daily brushing. The more regularly you brush, the better: so it becomes routine for you and your dog.
Diet and dog dental hygiene
Diet can be a major factor in the development of plaque and tartar. Soft foods or brittle dry kibble, which crumbs on impact, may contribute to plaque build-up and subsequent periodontal disease.
We, therefore, recommend special non-brittle fibrous kibbles as they can be helpful in preventing plaque build-up above the gum line. Hill’s t/d, which we stock, is considered the best of its type and a similar technology is in the Hills Vet Essentials range. These are recommended by the Veterinary Oral Health Council.
Dental chews can be a useful adjunct to brushing and/or diet but should not be relied on alone