Do you clean your Dogs teeth? If not, read this Post!


If you are a regular follower of my Instagram stories, you probably already know that we own two Shih-tzu dogs. One is eight years old and the other two. As I type this, one is asleep at my feet, the other is laying at the top of the stairs ‘keeping watch’.  Shih-tzus do not shed hair, they need to be regularly clipped and trimmed although, I do love their fluffy fur, it gives them such character! They have regular health checks, eat wet and dry food and they share ½ a large dental stick every day, to keep their teeth healthy. I thought that was all fine until I agreed to collaborate on this campaign and learnt so much more about dog dental care



Do you clean your Dogs teeth?



Disclosure: AD: This post is in conjunction with Pedigree® but all thoughts are my own

dogs oral health looking after your dogs teeth.



We clean our own teeth everyday so why not clean your dogs teeth too.

When you think about it, teeth are as important to dogs as our hands are to us! We use ours for eating, dogs use theirs for so many other things; playing, grooming, carrying, tugging and living life to the full…


…teeth are as important to dogs as our hands are to us!


Do you clean your Dogs teeth? If not, you must read this Post!
Do you clean your Dogs teeth? If not, you must read this Post!


Interesting Facts about your dogs teeth:


  • Like humans dogs have two sets of teeth in their lives.
  • During puppy hood dogs have 28 deciduous teeth.
  • Puppy teeth usually start to fall out and are replaced by adult teeth at about 4 months of age.
  • Most dogs will have a full set of adult teeth by 6-8 months. With the molars coming in last.
  • There is a variation within breeds but most dogs have 42 teeth.



dogs oral health looking after your dogs teeth.



Signs of Gum Disease to watch out for:


  1. Bad breath in dogs is not normal and is almost always a sign of underlying gum disease.
  2. Bleeding gums (just like us) is a major sign of gum disease.
  3. A dog that is less lively or less willing to play is thought to be ” just getting old” this could be the result of gum disease. Would you fancy a game of tug if your mouth was sore?
  4. Your dog may be reluctant to have his head or face touched.


I had a look at my dogs teeth…

Both my dogs were happy but puzzled when I inspected their teeth! The older one has very healthy teeth and gums, probably because he  loves dried food. I discovered the younger one would definitely benefit from having his teeth cleaned as surprisingly, he had plaque on his teeth!



dogs oral health looking after your dogs teeth.



How to brush your dogs teeth

As the joke says – carefully!

Use pet toothpaste, do not use human toothpaste!

Introduce tooth brushing gradually, keep each session short from a few seconds to a maximum of 2 minutes.

Introduce the pet toothpaste on your finger first and allow your dog to lick the toothpaste. rub your finger tip on his teeth.

With the other hand gently hold the muzzle to keep his moth mostly closed. Insert finger under the top lip and gently rub teeth. Take care, dont allow the mouth to open or you may get chewed!

On the next session introduce the toothbrush.

Repeat each small stage on five separate days, until your dog is comfortable with each session.

If you feel or see anything you are not happy with consult your vet.


My older dog is not at all keen to have a toothbrush anywhere near him, so I am booking an oral health check with my vet first. then we will begin our tooth brushing training. 



dogs oral health looking after your dogs teeth.



TIP: Use an adult size toothbrush on large dogs and a child’s tooth brush on smaller dogs.



We already use dental chews…

My dogs have half a dental chew after breakfast and the other half after their dinner, before bed. Dental sticks help reduce plaque and tartar build up, helping to keep teeth and gums healthy. A bit like us, cleaning our teeth twice a day.

Click the link for more information on looking after your dogs teeth and dog dental care



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Disclosure: This post is in conjunction with Pedigree® but all thoughts are my own


  1. 01/03/2020 / 21:44

    Mine can’t have dental sticks because they get upset tummy with them. I have tried cleaning with a toothbrush but not been lucky there either! I might try introducing the paste with my finger though and go from there. Murphy has grown so much! Love him xx

    • Ashley
      02/03/2020 / 11:17

      Id be scared stiff to stick my hand in your dogs mouths! Good luck with that Laurie! Someone suggested Ox ears to me perhaps try that too?
      Bestest Ash xx

  2. Danish Pastry
    29/02/2020 / 17:54

    We have a Rottweiler, we’ve found that the best thing to help keep her teeth clean are dried ox ears. Dental sticks are just too soft for a dog with such strong jaw muscles. She also eats only dried food. She absolutely loves the ox ears, it takes her about 20 minutes to devour one, and she doesn’t stop until it’s all gone! She has one a week.
    We don’t clean her teeth, as they’re in pretty good nick, about once every three months, my husband will remove the small amount of plaque build up there is – he uses one of those pointy dentistry tools. Our dog is so trusting that he can do this pretty easily – we’ve always inspected her teeth and gums, looked in her ears etc, so she’s used to us checking her over. Our vet is happy with her teeth and how we keep them healthy.
    Apparently smaller dogs generally have more dental issues, so dental sticks are great for them. But I’d definately try something like dried ox ears if aren’t hard enough for your dog.

    • Ashley
      01/03/2020 / 12:12

      Sound advice thank you !
      I think they would enjoy the Ox ears, I will try it out, when they finish their dental sticks.