Canine Dental Hygiene: What to Feed Your Dog

Last update: 15 June, 2018

Although dogs have very strong teeth, they do need taken care of. However, cleaning them regularly can be a tedious task, because it’s not something that they enjoy. Good news: there are foods you can feed your dog to make the process of maintaining good canine dental hygiene a little easier.

This is important, since dogs have a very different way of eating than us. They do not chew food the same way. This results in more food residue being stuck in their teeth, and that’s why canine dental hygiene is so important.

Food for good canine dental hygiene

Canine dental hygiene: a dog chewing.

Special dog food

There are certain lines of dog food specially designed to maintain proper canine dental hygiene. They prevent tartar and bad breath, sometimes containing natural essences such as rosemary or eucalyptus. They have a hard texture so that chewing them will help extract food residue from your dog’s mouth. They also come in different forms, like treats or bones.

Dry food

We’ve always said that the foods created specifically for dogs contain everything their health requires. As it happens, they also take care of your dog’s oral health.

In fact, there are some that eliminate tartar due to ingredients that capture the calcium in their saliva. They also contain substances that adhere to the teeth and prevent tartar buildup. Dry dog food has a size, shape and texture created strategically to be harder to chew.

Cookies and treats

Your dog surely loves treats! Almost all have been manufactured with the intention of contributing to good canine dental hygiene, and there are all kinds of varieties at the store.

Natural food

Dogs love to eat what we eat. Well, their dental hygiene is a good excuse to let them do so. For example, it is known that in the past, dogs were fed hard bread so that the chewing would remove tartar and plaque.

Other foods that can serve this purpose are apples and carrots because of their hard texture. They will help extract the remnants of food that have gotten stuck in their mouths. Celery can also be included among these foods, though your dog may not like it. Because the flavor is more bitter, the sweeter choices may go over better.

However, although these foods can give very good results, traditional dental care is always advisable.

How and when to clean your dog’s teeth

brush the dog's teeth

You can clean your dog’s teeth yourself at home. You already know that you can find toothpastes, toothbrushes and mouthwashes specially designed for canine dental hygiene in stores. But like we said before, it won’t be easy to brush your dog’s teeth.

Nevertheless, whether you do it at home or not, you should take your dog to the veterinarian for a thorough cleaning once a year. Giving him treats or foods that protect him from tartar doesn’t mean it’s no longer necessary to take him to the clinic.

An annual exam and oral cleaning are just as necessary for your dog just as it is for you. But of course if you buy special foods to take care of his teeth, the process with the vet will be shorter and you’ll be taking good care of your dog.

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.