Brushing Up on Dental Health
Help your puppy stay healthy by keeping his teeth in tip-top shape.
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What's the difference between a healthy mouth and a diseased mouth? According to Dr. Niemiec, the three basic steps to good oral care are: 1. Getting an annual oral examination (part of the annual physical); 2. Accustoming your puppy to having its mouth handled; and 3. Checking for dental problems.
In addition to regular brushing, "examine your pet's mouth once a month for swelling, bleeding, loose teeth and cavities," says Jan Bellows, D.V.M., Dipl. AVDC, ABVP, of the All Pets Dental Clinic in Weston, Florida. "Caring for your puppy's teeth is the most important thing you can do to ensure that your pet lives a long and pain-free life." The best way to examine the inside of your puppy's mouth is to gently grasp the top of the muzzle with your fingers on one side and thumb on the other. With your other hand, pull down on the lower jaw. Healthy gums will be firm, and either pink, black or spotted.
Next Step: Warning Signs
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