- Plaque and tartar buildup are at the root of many dental conditions in dogs and cats.
- By the time they’re 2 years old, 90% of dogs and 70% of cats have plaque and tartar buildup.¹
- The keys to prevention are a professional dental cleaning with your veterinarian and daily home care.
A Veterinarian Shares Pro Tips For Brushing Up
Dr. Heidi B. Lobprise (DVM/DAVDC) has the touch — and some easy-to-understand tips for brushing your pet’s teeth at home.
Below, you’ll also find links to videos of Dr. Lobprise demonstrating the techniques she describes in this handout.
Pro Tips For Brushing Your Dog’s Teeth
• Move slowly to gauge what your dog will allow you to do.
• Let your dog taste the toothpaste by letting them lick it off your finger (or the toothbrush).
• Gently hold your dog’s mouth closed with your nondominant hand. Using your dominant hand, rub some toothpaste on your dog’s upper and lower teeth. This step lets your dog get used to a little handling around the mouth.
• After that, introduce the actual toothbrush into your dog’s cheeks. Brush on both sides — mainly on the outsides.
• Tell them what a good dog they are!
Pro Tips For Brushing Your Cat’s Teeth
• Try working from behind your cat’s head.
• Start slowly with basic face rubs or ear scratches.
• Then, place a finger inside your cat’s lips, between the lips and the teeth, gently pulling back. This step mimics the action of brushing.
• After that, you can use a toothbrush, or just a bit of toothpaste on your finger or on a gauze pad to brush against the teeth, using the other hand to scratch your cat’s ears, chin or another favorite spot.
• Tell them what a fine cat they are!
What Should I Use To Brush My Pet’s Teeth?
Talk with your veterinarian, and ask what they recommend for your pet’s home care. For example, we designed our C.E.T.® Brand dental products to be easy for you to use at home.
Be sure to use a toothpaste that’s formulated especially for dogs and cats. Many toothpastes made for humans aren’t safe for pets to swallow! You can find pet-formulated toothpastes (in pet-friendly flavors) at dental.virbac.com.