How to Create a Regular Dental Routine For Dogs

Dec 22, 2023

When it comes to the dental health of our best furry friends, consistency is key. Just as we brush our teeth daily, our dogs need a routine to ensure their pearly whites (and overall health) are cared for too.

Why Is Dog Dental Care Important?A Golden Retriever Puppy chews on a toy to keep its teeth clean

Just like humans, our dogs can experience a whole host of problems if their teeth aren’t cared for properly. It’s not just about avoiding doggy breath or keeping their canines pearly white (see what we did there?). Scientific research has highlighted the deep connection between a dog’s oral health and their overall physiological well-being.

In a nutshell, here’s what happens in your dog’s mouth and why a dog’s dental health is so important.

Plaque builds up, which seems harmless at first, but it’s teeming with bacteria. If it’s not brushed away, it can cause the gums to become inflamed, which is also known as gingivitis, a periodontal disease. But it doesn’t stop there. Then, your dog’s body jumps into action, trying to fend off these bacteria, which can actually cause more harm than good in the process. This isn’t just a little redness and swelling; we’re talking about potential, severe damage to the tissues and even the bone supporting the teeth.

Now, even more significant trouble happens if bacteria get through the gums into the bloodstream. They can go on a little tour of the dog’s body, setting up camp in major organs like the heart and liver. Research has linked severe dental problems in dogs with systemic effects, including heart disease. That’s because the inflammation from the gums can get into the bloodstream and contribute to heart issues.

Unfortunately, we often overlook dental disease in dogs because it doesn’t always show up as obviously as other health conditions. We rarely pay attention to our dog’s teeth unless there’s a problem, but the evidence is strong enough that veterinarians worldwide take it seriously and want us to as well.

For instance, dogs with advanced gum disease have been shown to have a higher risk of heart problems compared to their counterparts with cleaner teeth. And when it comes to diabetes, inflamed gums can make it harder for dogs to regulate their blood sugar, since all that inflammation can interfere with insulin, the hormone that keeps sugar levels in check.

So, keeping your dog’s teeth clean is about a lot more than fresh breath. It’s about preventing a chain reaction that can affect the whole body. The good news is, creating a dog dental care routine is easier than it may sound, and in doing so, we can help our pups fend off these issues and lead a happier and more comfortable life.

Daily Routine for Your Dog’s Dental Health

It may sound daunting, but just like we incorporate oral health care in our routines, some routines for our dogs can make a big difference too!

  1. Brush Daily: Brushing your dog’s teeth daily can significantly decrease the risk of dental disease. It removes plaque and prevents the buildup of tartar, which can lead to periodontal disease. There are lots of different ways to brush your dog’s teeth; just don’t get hung up on it has to be like you’re doing professional cleanings. Anything that you do to improve your dog’s dental care is better than nothing, so even the attempt to brush your dog’s teeth will likely help remove junk that leads to significant periodontal disease.
  2. Feed Food That Helps Remove Plaque: Foods that cause abrasion on the teeth can help remove plaque. This disruption of the bacterial layer is a mechanical way to maintain oral hygiene.
  3. WATER—Make sure your dog always has lots of water. While not directly related to reducing plaque, proper hydration aids overall health and helps maintain oral hygiene by promoting saliva production, which naturally cleanses the mouth.
  4. Toys That Massage Gums/Keep Teeth Clean: Chewing on toys can massage the gums and help keep teeth clean by mechanically removing debris from the teeth, much like brushing does. Oral chew toys can help remove ick along the tooth surface and can also help the gum line be healthier, too. Certain chew toys are designed to reduce plaque and tartar buildup, so they’re always a hit.
  5. Nibble Daily on Dog Dental Chews That Promote Oral and Gut Health: Dental chews with specific ingredients like those found in Charming Chompers can reduce plaque and support gut health due to their probiotic content.

Unique Ideas for Dog Dental Care

In addition to a daily routine that promotes your dog’s dental hygiene, there are some other fun ways you may be able to use to keep their dental health issues at a minimum.

  1. Dental Health Training Sessions: Make dental care a fun game. Reward your dog for sitting still while you brush their teeth or for chewing on the right toys.
  2. Create a ‘Tooth-Friendly’ Treat Hunt: Hide dental treats around the house or yard to encourage your dog to use their teeth and gums to find them.
  3. Frozen Broth Cubes: Freeze broth in ice cube trays for a hydrating treat that helps clean the teeth when your dog chews on them. This is a fan favorite for a lot of pet parents–especially when you freeze a bit of dog toothpaste inside!
  4. Regular Mouth Inspections: Get into the habit of regularly checking your dog’s mouth for any signs of dental issues such as loose teeth or bad breath, which could indicate a problem. Doing this will make it easier for you if you need to go to the vet for more in-depth checking. Untreated dental disease is not something you want to play around with.

Dog Dental Chews: It’s About More Than Dog’s Breath

We often give our dogs dental chews to help improve dog’s breath. But as we know, so much more goes into their bad doggy breath. It’s often an indicator that there’s an issue with their gut health too. That’s what we wanted to address when we decided to create Bernie’s Charming Chompers. We wanted a dental chew that would play a dual role in canine oral hygiene.

Not only do Charming Chompers mechanically help remove plaque and tartar, but they also deliver beneficial ingredients that promote dental health. One study from the Journal of Biological Sciences examined the effectiveness of various dental products, including chews, in reducing oral bacteria. The results showed that dental chews and tooth brushing significantly reduced oral bacteria. The study suggests that the physical act of chewing is beneficial and that certain antibacterial ingredients can provide a lasting protective effect against plaque formation​​. But, when you include ingredients that also address gut health, you give your dog a powerful boost to their overall health and vitality too!

Dental Chew Ingredients That Make a DifferenceA marbled french bulldog gets his teeth brushed by his owner

Let’s be honest. There are lots of dental chews for dogs on the market. But, we designed ours for our own dogs, Bernie and Lady. And because at Bernie’s Best, we address good health from the inside out, we wanted to incorporate ingredients that were good for oral and gut health in dogs. That’s why we included these powerhouse ingredients that are often good for oral and gut health too!

  • Sweet Potato: This superfood is rich in dietary fiber! Sweet potatoes help in mechanical plaque removal. They also contain vitamins that support immune health, contributing to a healthier mouth environment.
  • Parsley: Known for its breath-freshening properties, parsley also has antibacterial effects that can help reduce oral bacteria.
  • Rosemary Extract: This herb is not only a natural preservative but is also associated with anti-inflammatory properties, which can benefit gum health.
  • Parsley: Parsley is well-known for its ability to freshen breath. It also has antibacterial properties that can help to minimize the presence of harmful bacteria in the mouth. More, though it’s great for gut health in both dogs and humans.
  • Natural Mint Flavor: While primarily used to improve breath freshness, mint can also have mild antibacterial properties that contribute to oral health.
  • Green Tea Extract: Green tea is rich in catechins, which have been shown to reduce bacteria and toxins in the mouth, making it a valuable ingredient for dental health.
  • Alfalfa: Alfalfa is rich in vitamins and minerals that can promote overall health, which may indirectly help support the condition of the gums and teeth.
  • Pumpkin: Pumpkin is rich in fiber, which can help with digestive health, and its texture can aid in cleaning the teeth as dogs chew on pumpkin-based treats.
  • Yogurt: Yogurt is a great source of probiotics, which can contribute to a healthy gut flora, improving digestion and potentially positively impacting oral health by influencing oral bacteria’s balance.
  • Blueberries: These are high in antioxidants, which may contribute to overall health, including oral health, by reducing oxidative stress that could otherwise contribute to inflammation in the body, including the gums.
  • Green Tea Extract: Green tea extract contains catechins, known for their antibacterial properties, which can help reduce plaque formation and may improve oral health.
  • Rosemary Extract: As an anti-inflammatory agent, rosemary extract can contribute to oral health by reducing inflammation in the gums, which is a key factor in developing periodontal disease.
  • Inulin: This prebiotic fiber is beneficial for gut health, promoting the growth of beneficial bacteria in the digestive system, which is important for overall health and can indirectly affect oral health by maintaining a balanced microbiome.

Charming Chompers: The Superior Choice

At Bernie’s Best, we’re all about the best. We focus on science-backed ingredients like sweet potato, rosemary, green tea extract, and fiber-rich components and probiotics to make the best dental chew available. We go deeper than just offering dental benefits because we know how closely related the gut and oral microbiomes are related. We wanted an easy, delicious way to help our dogs’ oral and gut health, and we want to offer that to you, too! For us, it’s about comprehensive health care, with each ingredient playing its part in supporting your dog’s well-being and happiness! By giving your dog one of these chews daily, you’re not just cleaning their teeth but enhancing their overall health. 


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