Puppies are born without teeth. However within 3-4 weeks they can eat food due to the presence of 28 teeth in total!

Dental hygiene is a very essential part of dog’s grooming. Cleaning the dog’s teeth on a regular basis will keep the gums and teeth strong and kill the bad odor from the mouth.

Like every other grooming routine dental hygiene should also be part of regular grooming activities. Primarily it is important that the dog gets used to brushing and is not forced to brush.

The dog should be comfortable while brushing and should have a pleasant experience rather than feel traumatized by the activity. Pick a time in a day, and brush the dog’s teeth daily at the same time. Let the dog get used to brushing teeth like walking or going to the garden.

Consult you vet before you start brushing the dog’s teeth for selecting a correct tooth brush and tooth paste. There are a variety of dental products available in the market, let the vet decide the best suited for your dog.

Using a soft bristled toothbrush is highly recommended. Start but gently stroking the outside of your dog’s cheek and the inside gums with your fingers. You do not want to start pushing the brush around the mouth of a dog in the beginning. Once the dog feels comfortable with your fingers, add a little toothpaste on your finger and let the dog sniff and taste the paste.

Next, you want to introduce the toothbrush. There are different styles and types of toothbrushes, so you want to decide if you will be using the finger toothbrush, regular pet toothbrush, or a triple head pet toothbrush.

         Finger Toothbrush                                        Regular Toothbrush                       Triple Head  Toothbrush

You want to brush your dog's teeth in a slow and gently circular manner, spending about 30 seconds on each side. Initially you should start by brushing only 1 or 2 teeth and the gums with a little paste. Eventually you can increase the number if teeth. Only when the dog gets used to brushing daily should you start brushing the entire set of teeth. This may take a week but it is important to make the dog feel comfortable. Be very gentle on the gums and teeth.

Don't let your dog decide when you're finished. You are the one that stops the session, not him, but for the first several sessions while your dog is still getting used to you brushing his teeth, you'll want to make the sessions short and gradually build up the time. If you're dog learns to dislike the procedure from the start, then it'll make brushing his teeth harder and harder; so make sure that you stop the sessions before he starts to fuss. Limit brushing each part for about 30 seconds. And be as gentle as possible.

After each session, you'll want to praise your dog with love, treats, and attention. By stopping each session on a fun and happy note, your dog will start to look forward to having his teeth brushed versus run the other direction when you pull out his toothbrush.

Homemade mouth fresheners can be used to keep the mouth smelling fresh and good. A mixture of parsley, fresh mint, ginger, and fennel seeds can be added to water or dry food to improve the breath. This mix can be also given as a treat. For summer, add water to this paste and freeze the mixture in ice trays, ice cubes of this mixture are very refreshing in summer and help kill bad odor.