Human dental care is second nature, but what about the teeth health of your dogs? When it comes to Alsatians, the teeth health and care need to be put first. Poor oral hygiene will lead to future health problems, including heart disease. Here’s all you need to know about German Shepherd teeth health and care.
Infections Spread Quickly in Dogs
When a dog picks up an infection in the mouth, it will spread quickly if it is not treated. Dogs don’t have hands, so they need to use their mouths for everything. That means germs and bacteria get into the mouth and settle, especially if there are cavities or gaps in the gums.
Of course, trying to brush the teeth of your German Shepherd seems impossible. Dogs tend to be the worst dental patients. They hate you near their mouths and there is the risk of attacking.
Remember that Alsatians were bred to use their teeth to cause damage. Their bite is dangerous. While some of the German Shepherds will sit still and let you brush, not all will. It will also depend on the mood that your pet is in.
What Oral Issues Are You Looking Out For?
To know how to care for the oral health, you need to know about the potential teeth problems. Tarter and plaque build-up are among the most problematic issues in oral hygiene. It’s easy for these to develop and they will lead to cavities if you don’t take care of them quickly. You can see if your pet has tartar build-up by checking the colour of the teeth. If there are brown or yellow sections, then your dog has tartar.
Over recent years, gingivitis has become a major problem for the Alsatian breeds. They were once given a diet of foods that would help to clean out the teeth. Now, canned food is soft and remains stuck in the mouth. Bacteria build up throughout the day, leading to the gums inflaming and bleeding. If not treated properly, periodontal disease is common and can lead to other infections in the body.
You’ll know if your German Shepherd is struggling with oral problems. Not only will you see their appetite reduce, but they become more aggressive. They just don’t know how to deal with the pain in their mouth. If allowed to continue, the infection can set into the jar, which is excruciating. Ulcers can eventually developed, along with teeth falling out.
Tips for Caring for Your German Shepherd’s Teeth
Let’s start with the most obvious tip for protecting the teeth. You need to brush your German Shepherd’s teeth on at least a daily basis. If your dog hates this and refuses to sit and remain still, you will need to find another option for your own safety. Sometimes vets will arrange for you to bring your dog in for brushing treatments while under anaesthetic to make sure this is done regularly.
Rope toys are excellent for protecting the oral health. They help to keep the jaw stronger, while deal with plaque and food build-up in the mouth. Elements of the rope can get in between the teeth to remove anything stuck there. To help clean with dog toothpaste, you can put some on the rope while playing. Your dog will barely realise what you’ve done!
There are other chew toys that you can buy that do something similar. Your vet will be able to suggest a few ideas in your local area, based on your dog’s temperament and interests.
Don’t forget to add some dry dog food to the mix. This helps to strengthen the bones in the mouth, while cleaning out built up tartar and plaque.
Look after your dog’s teeth. A German Shepherd dog may not like their teeth brushing, but that doesn’t mean you have to let bacteria grow and infection set in.