Dental Care for Dogs and Cats

When was the last time you had a really good look in your pet’s mouth? If you are like many of us, we tend not to look as often as we should.  

When we think of poor dental hygiene for dogs and cats, what first comes to mind is the typical bad breath many pets have. Your sweet and fluffy friend comes over for a cuddle and wants to get up close and personal, but when you get a whiff of their breath, it’s ‘sorry pal, not that close!’ It doesn’t have to be this way; we can give our pet’s breath and their dental health a makeover, giving them fresher breath, and better health, making everyone happy!

Mother Nature Garden Centre-Powell River-Dental Care for Dogs and Cats-pet dental month

Poor Oral Care can Lead to Serious Health Issues

Did you know that how clean your pet’s teeth are can directly affect their overall health? Because dental disease is a hidden disease, you may not know your pet is in pain or having dental problems.

Along with gingivitis, periodontitis, plaque, tartar, and oral cancers—poor oral hygiene can also allow toxins from the mouth to spread to the liver, kidney, heart, and even the brain. Cats, in particular, are susceptible to two extra oral conditions, feline odontoclastic resorption lesions, painful lesions in the mouth, and gingivostomatitis, which is inflammation of oral tissue causing bleeding.

The good news is we can prevent these from happening to our pets by beginning a good oral hygiene practice today! Making dental care a part of your pet’s regular routine will catch problems before they have a chance to become painful.

Mother Nature Garden Centre-Powell River-Dental Care for Dogs and Cats-periodontal disease

My pet has plaque on their teeth already; what do I do? 

So, you’ve decided to take the plunge into your pet’s mouth and take a good look—bad breath and all—and you find some plaque and tartar already building on their teeth. For many, it is not too late to reverse this at home, but if you feel that you need extra help, you can consider taking your pet to see your veterinarian or a pet dental professional for cleaning. Many companies offer no-sedation cleaning for pets which is a great option. For a small amount of plaque and tartar, you can get started now on your pet’s teeth cleaning.

Mother Nature Garden Centre-Powell River-Dental Care for Dogs and Cats-brushing pet teeth

Cleaning Your Pets’ Teeth 

 There are two main ways to keep your pet’s teeth clean at home:

  1. You can brush their teeth
  2. They can chew to clean

To give your pet the best oral hygiene care, we recommend you do both. 


Easy Brushing Tips 

  • Pick a calm time
  • Make your pet comfortable
  • Have good lighting
  • Let your pet have a good look and sniff of the brush and toothpaste. (Always use pet-safe toothpaste!) 
  • Start slowly—gradually increase the brushing time until you are able to do a complete brushing
  • Give your pet lots of love and praise after brushing. A tasty dental treat would be appreciated at this time as well! 
Mother Nature Garden Centre-Powell River-Dental Care for Dogs and Cats-smiling dog

Chewing Treats for Dental Care

 These types of treats are similar to many of the regular treats we have on hand for our pets. Avoid too many soft kinds and ensure that your pet receives some good treats to chew on as well to help with teeth care. 


Chewing Treats for Dogs 
  • Bully Sticks 
  • Smoked Bones 
  • Raw Bones 
  • Pork Rawhides 
  • Synthetic Bones 
  • Dental Treat Sticks 
Mother Nature Garden Centre-Powell River-Dental Care for Dogs and Cats-petting a cat
Chewing Treats for Cats 
  • Small Hard Treats 
  • Dehydrated Sardines and Salmon 
  • Raw Bones

*A Special Note on Raw Bones 

Raw bones for both dogs and cats are especially beneficial to oral health. Raw meats contain naturally-occurring enzymes that help protect teeth and gums, which help break down plaque and freshen breath. Raw bone treats are not only hugely beneficial to your pet—both dogs and cats—but they will love the amazing treat as well!