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CAT / health & care

How To Care for Your Pet’s Teeth

A dental guide for every day, week, month and year


Dental disease affects more than 80% of adult cats and dogs The consequences of tooth decay are unpleasant enough (think about your last toothache). When left untreated, dental problems can cause disease and infection in your pet’s mouth, blood and even vital organs.

But it’s not hard to maintain your pet’s oral health. We’ve got a schedule of solutions.

Every day

Try dental pet food. Consider feeding your dog or cat teeth-cleaning kibble. Dental formulas for dogs and cats have ingredients that may help prevent plaque and tartar buildup and the kibble pieces are shaped to help scrub plaque from teeth.

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Treat your pet to a dental delicacy. Dental chews, crunchy biscuits and rawhides can help clean your dog’s choppers in a fun way. Cats get their own dental treats in the form of small, crunchy nuggets.

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Make sure your pet has chew toys. Dogs particularly like to gnaw on toys, which is a calorie-free way to help keep plaque at bay.

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Three times a week

Brush your pet’s teeth. Brushing removes plaque and tartar. Use a toothbrush and toothpaste especially designed for dogs or cats. If you’re not sure how to introduce your pet to this new experience, this quick-start guide can help.

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Once a month

Look in your pet’s mouth. Carefully scan the teeth and gums for any signs of dental disease.

Once a year

Go to the “pet dentist.” Schedule a thorough dental exam with your veterinarian.

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