If Fido’s kisses make you want to faint from the smell, you definitely need to check out our brilliantly easy ways to get rid of bad dog breath! Imagine this: You’re laying on your back watching clouds roll by in a sweet-smelling field. Suddenly, the sky darkens, you feel raindrops on your face, and the sweet smell of the grass is replaced by a horrible odor. Jolting awake, you realize you’re at home on your couch, and your lovable dog has wandered over for your attention – panting and drooling in your face as he does. That horrible smell? His breath.
Bad dog breath is not uncommon – after all, they don’t brush their teeth – but it is unpleasant. There are a number of ways to manage your dog’s oral hygiene, but the very first step is to see your vet to rule out any medical reasons. Bad breath in dogs can be caused by tooth decay, gastrointestinal issues, and even more severe health conditions such as diabetes and cancer – so it’s important to make sure you’re only dealing with an all-day case of puppy morning breath.
Easy Ways to Get Rid of Bad Dog Breath
Affiliate links included below. Thanks for your support!
With all medical reasons safely ruled out, they are a number of ways to help freshen your dog’s breath:
Brush their teeth
Just because your dog can’t brush her teeth, that doesn’t mean that you can’t do it for her. Special brushes are available at your vet or local pet store, as are toothpastes and rinses to help get rid of bacteria. Brushing can help clean off the beginnings of plaque on the dog’s teeth, which in turn helps prevent gingivitis and decay. Make sure you get your dog used to having their mouth touched and that you can safely put your fingers in their mouth without any danger to you or them.
Chew toys and chews
Dogs need to chew. If not provided with something safe and healthy to work on, they will often find something of their own – and it may not be something you want them to have. Chewing is a great way for your dog to release frustrations, as well as a fun way to clean their teeth. As with brushing, chews and chew toys help by scraping plaque off of your dog’s teeth and clearing food particles from between them. Dogs should always be supervised during chew time, and you should check with your vet before giving your pup anything to see what they recommend – or don’t.
If the idea of giving your dog a chew toy or bone makes you nervous, or you don’t have the time to supervise a lengthy chomp session, dental treats can make a difference. There are many types on the market, including minty breath-freshening ones and grain-free options.
High quality food
High quality dog food doesn’t have to be the most expensive food on the market, but it does often come with a higher price tag than some. Talk to your vet, friends, and family, and read online reviews. Make a list of frequently recommended foods and do your research. There are a ton of options that can work well for your dog, no matter their age, breed, or size – whether you choose to go with raw or kibble, grain-free, limited ingredient, etc. Keep in mind while considering price tags that putting your dog on high-quality food will save you money on dental visits as well as other veterinary concerns – plus, the better the food, the less waste your dog produces – and who doesn’t want that? Good food is easy for your dog to digest, which reduces the risk of bad breath due to gastrointestinal issues.
Hide the goods
Sometimes bad breath is a result of something your dog ate – much like your garlic breath after a strong Caesar salad. Dogs are opportunists, and they have some weird tastes. One of the biggest issues I’ve heard people mention is dogs eating poop – their own, other dogs’, or, often in multi-pet households, the dreaded litter box treasure hunt. This should be strongly discouraged – first, for obvious reasons (nobody wants an enthusiastic face-lick following that kind of snack) – but also for your dog’s health. Even with the other animals being vaccinated (and hopefully they are) – there is a chance that your dog could pick something up. Clumping cat litter ingested with the “treats” could present major digestive issues as well. For your own home, it’s best to put the box somewhere that your pup can’t access it – either up on something, behind a gate or door that only your cats can get past, or a covered box that blocks access to the contents.
Following the above advice should help ensure that you can snuggle with your pup without gagging – and you can enjoy the sweet smell of their fur instead. Unless, of course, they’ve had an encounter with a skunk or something dead. That’s a whole other issue though…
Do you have any other favorite tips for getting rid of bad dog breath? Share below!