Your dog may or may not smile when it is happy, but those rows of snow-white teeth are still extremely important to your canine's well-being. Unfortunately, dogs can be especially prone to dental decay and even gum disease without nutritious food and regular dog dental care. At least 80 percent of pets develop dental issues by the time they are three years old.
Unfortunately, one major myth gets in the way of some pet parents ever doing anything to support their dog's dental health. The myth? Dry kibble is all you need to support dog dental health. Let's take a closer look at why kibble is not always good for your dog's teeth and should never be treated as a simple solution to keeping a dog's teeth healthy.
The Dry Kibble Myth and Its Background in Association with Dog Dental Health
So, where did this myth come from? In general, the myth is only based on assumptions or theory; crunchy, dry food must slough away tartar. Even though you may find some specialty foods, which are often prescription-based from the vet, that are specifically created to help canine dental health, typical dry kibble actually does little for the teeth. No evidence has been established to show that dry crunchy food can clean a dog's teeth.
The Shortcomings of the Dry Kibble Theory for Dog Dental Care
If 80 percent of dogs do have dental health problems when the bulk of dog owners feed their pets dry kibble, dry kibble obviously does little to support dental health. Most kibble is simply processed food that is designed to offer an attractive flavor for the dog and a bundle of necessary nutrients. However, the act of eating the kibble is not enough to protect the teeth of your dog. A few reasons why that is the case include:
- Kibble can contain starch and carbohydrates that generate tartar
- Kibble particles can get trapped between teeth to promote decay
- Kibble lacks natural elements found in raw food that can clean a dog's teeth
Beyond Kibble: How You Can Be Attentive to Dog Dental Health
While kibble may not clean your dog's teeth, you can work to help your dog keep its teeth clean and lessen the risk of oral health problems. Natural treats that mimic the consistency of bones and tendons can sometimes help control tartar. Tucker’s Grain Free Frozen Raw Beef Bones and Petzlife Oral Care Salmon Flavor Gel are good options for dental care that do not require brushing. Oral sprays for dogs, such as this Petzlife Oral Care Peppermint Flavor Spray, may be useful to deter plaque formation as well. You can also find:
- Dental wipes for dogs
- Toothbrushes and dog-safe toothpaste
- Plaque-deterring water additives
As an adage, most veterinarians do recommend dogs have dental checkups periodically. So be sure to talk to your vet about your dog's oral health care when it is time for a checkup. If you need products to help protect your dog's teeth, be sure to check out the collection of dog dental care products available at Aleyr.
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