Sadly our pets can’t talk to us when something is wrong. Yes, they may exhibit odd behavior such as limping, aggressiveness, etc., but many conditions have symptoms we can only recognize if we look for them specifically. Bad breath is an indication that something may be orally or internally wrong with our pet.
The problem is, many pet owners think bad breath is inherent and natural. This is a misconception, as breath can be quite the accurate indication of oral hygiene.
Bad breath stems primarily from bacterial plaque accumulating in your pet’s mouth. The bacteria builds up during activities like eating, drooling, and chewing on toys, and makes its way under the gum line, where it can create serious problems like gingivitis. If left untreated, the issue can progress into periodontal disease, which then begins to negatively impact overall physical health.
According to the American Veterinary Medical Association, seventy-five percent of dogs and cats over the age of three have some form of oral disease. Ironically, oral disease can be easily prevented with regular brushing of your pet’s teeth, and administration of dental treats. Treats that are approved by the Veterinary Oral Health Council (VOHC) are often more effective than ones that are not.
If your pet has bad breath, it is important to consult with your veterinarian as soon as possible. At least bring up the issue during one of your routine visits. Many veterinarians may recommend dental cleanings for your pet, which can be costly, but effective. As long as you keep up with your pet’s oral hygiene, they should be free of any oral disease, which will save you money on healthcare costs in the long run!
Keep your pet’s mouth clean with regular brushing and be rewarded with a happy, healthier, better smelling pet!