Last updated on March 4, 2019
If your dog hates having his teeth brushed, today is your lucky day. February is National Pet Dental Health Month, and it’s a good time for me to come clean, pun intended. Not every dog is going to like teeth brushing; some will outright despise it.
If your dog’s mouth or breath ever smell, there could be a very scary underlying problem that many dog parents fail to recognize. I know because until recently, I never heard of xerostomia (said like zero-stow-me-uh) in dogs.
Another word for xerostomia is dry mouth. If your dog has ever taken medications, doesn’t have regular teeth brushing, has any health issues, or is simply getting older, he or she may have dry mouth.
When the salivary glands aren’t producing enough saliva to keep your gums and mouth moist, dry mouth can occur in people and in pets. Dry mouth can also lead to a whole host of problems in dogs.
Long-time readers of this blog know that both of my Cocker Spaniels, past and present, never had professional teeth cleaning. I am an ardent supporter of daily teeth brushing in dogs, but I know that is not always possible nor feasible for some people.
Here’s what to do when your dog hates teeth brushing and how to tackle dry mouth by first determining if your dog is affected.
This post contains some affiliate links for which I earn a small income if you click through and purchase something on the links. Please see my disclosure policy for details.
Dry Mouth in Dogs
The first sign most pet parents notice of dry mouth in dogs is bad breath. A dry mouth is the perfect breeding ground for bacteria and fungus to overgrow.
There are a whole host of red flags that may indicate your dog has dry mouth, including but not limited to:
- Taking medications
- Aging process
- Thyroid dysfunction
- Autoimmune disease
- Anxious dogs
- Dogs who have had cancer/chemotherapy/radiation
I pride myself on being a savvy dog mom and dog blogger, so when my dog starting lip smacking despite proper oral hygiene, I worried. He had an autoimmune disease called IMT, of which he is in remission. He also takes medication and is now 10 years old. His teeth are clean, I brush them nightly, and his veterinarian gumline looks great. However, he could be affected with dry mouth.
A long-time user of the Zymox® line of products, I talked to them about Dexter’s symptom of lip-smacking, and dry mouth was discussed. Being a type A personality, I learned a ton about dry mouth in dogs and why saliva is so important for good overal oral health.
What To Do For Dry Mouth In Dogs
Whether your dog hates having his teeth brushed and/or you suspect your dog has dry mouth, there are a few things you can do. Here’s what we’ve been doing over the past four weeks:
- Continuing with daily teeth brushing to maintain proper dental care. If your dog doesn’t like this or you just don’t want to engage with it, keep reading, there’s more.
- Apply a half-inch strip of Oratene Brushless Oral Care toothpaste gel to your dog’s gums at least once a day. It is best to do this in the morning, at night, or after a meal for maximum efficacy. No brushing required!!! We’ve been doing this for a month.
- Consider adding Oratene Brushless Oral Care water additive to your dog’s water bowl daily. It kills germs and helps remove plaque without brushing. It contains no harmful Xylitol, alcohol, chlorhexidine, or detergent.
My dog is super fussy about tastes and flavors, which is ironic because he will try to eat a piece of random gunk on the sidewalk. I digress. I added this to his water twice a week and he never rejected it. I never use water additives, so this was a leap of trust for me. I allowed my dog to drink this additive in his water because of the patented combination of naturally occurring enzymes in the product.
I won’t recommend anything to our followers and friends that we don’t use and believe in ourselves. I learned about Biotene as the number one product for people with dry mouth. The same chemist who developed the C.E.T. line of toothpaste for dogs, which we use, understood and helped developed the line of oral care products for dogs.
In 2008, GlaxoSmithKline acquired the Biotene line for humans, so that meant a brand name change was needed for the pet products. Hence, the ZYMOX LP3 Enzyme System Oratene® Brushless Oral Care line is what we are discussing here.
Older Dogs and Dry Mouth
My dog’s bestie is a 15-year-old mixed breed named Zola. She has an array of health problems that her mom has been managing. One of the conditions requires a daily steroid. Zola is also anti-traditional teeth brushing. Her mom agreed to try the Oratene brushless oral care toothpaste on Zola once a day for two weeks.
Zola was receptive to the process, there is no brushing involved, and her mom applied the gel at night before bedtime. So far, so good, and Zola’s mouth is looking good. Since medications are the most common cause of dry mouth, Zola was the perfect candidate since she is clearly a dog who hates having her teeth brushed.
Facebook Live Invitation: My Dog Hates Having His Teeth Brushed
In honor of National Pet Dental Health month, I will be hosting a Facebook Live on Fidose of Reality’s Facebook page where we will be giving away three tubes of the Oratene Brushless Oral Care toothpaste gel. All you need to do is show up and be an active participant. We will give two tubes away during the broadcast and one tube away here on the blog.
We will update this blog post to include the Facebook Live video afterward.
Here are details of the event and what we will cover:
- Friday, February 15th
- Time: 1 pm EST
- Topics: How to brush your dog’s teeth and how to properly use the Oratene system along with dog dental help true and false and fun tips.
Where To Buy Biotene Brushless Oral Care
Since I do most of my shopping on Amazon, I recommend checking out the line of Oratene products there:
Learn more by visiting the Zymox Oratene website.
Note: This post contains affiliate links from Amazon, meaning if you click on a link above and then make a purchase, Fidose of Reality will receive a small commission with no extra cost to you. You help us keep the site up and running and in exchange, you get to shop for items you love. Wags!