Bad breath, or halitosis, is one of the most common dental issues in dogs. It can be an indication of tooth decay, plaque or tartar build-up, gum infections, digestive system issues, respiratory tract problems, etc. Basically, if your dog’s breath has a foul smell, it can be a red flag that requires immediate attention.
The first step is to consult the veterinarian in order to pinpoint the causes of bad breath in dogs. You don’t want to guess the issue and try home remedies before knowing the actual reason. Make sure to give details of your dog’s everyday diet, oral hygiene, physical activities, and regular behavior around the house. If the vet has nullified any serious health conditions that can cause bad breath, then you can try some at-home remedies discussed below.
Natural Remedies for Bad Breath in Dogs
Many dog owners think that giving mouthwash or mint-flavored treats that are specifically designed for dogs will do the trick. However, doing this will only mask the issue and not resolve it; your dog is not looking for a short term solution. Instead, we need to understand the main cause(s) of bad breath and fix the problem accordingly.
- Just like humans, even a dog’s teeth need to be brushed on a regular basis. Ask the vet as to which toothpaste will suit your dog. With a soft-bristled toothbrush, make sure you brush their teeth daily. Read more here: how to brush dogs teeth.
- Visit the veterinarian at least twice a year for a thorough examination. Regular checkups can help catch the causes behind bad breath.
- Always feed high-quality and easy-to-digest food. Avoid giving canned food and switch to dry foods like kibble. You can also add finely chopped parsley on your dog’s food.
- Reduce the amount of meat in your dog’s diet for a while. More often than not, meat can be a contributing factor to bad breath. Instead, offer them lots of fresh fruits and vegetables.
- Give snacks that help improve your dog’s breath such as carrot and apple. By gnawing on either of the treats will stimulate saliva and help wash down food particles stuck in the mouth.
- Offer hard chew toys or beef bones to chew on that will clean their teeth naturally.
- Keep your dog’s bowl clean as it will help eliminate bacteria from building up. After he drinks water, empty the bowl, wash it with soap, and refill the bowl with clean water. Make sure you provide plenty of fresh drinking water through the day.
- The same goes for the bowl he/she uses to eat from. Whether it is a stainless steel or ceramic bowl, empty out the remaining food, wash it properly, and let it dry before refilling it.
- Check your dog’s mouth regularly to ensure no food particles are stuck between the teeth, there’s no bleeding, or any teeth are chipped or broken.
Although following these helpful tips can help reduce the foul odor from your dog’s mouth, it certainly isn’t a substitute for the invaluable input given by the veterinarian. Getting to the root immediately and treating the issue effectively is what will help keep your dog’s bad breath away.