What’s Included in a Good Dental Diet for Dogs?
Teeth brushing, chew toys and regular dental check-ups go a long way to ensuring your dog’s teeth and gums stay clean and healthy, but their diet is equally as important.
If you’re wondering which foods will provide the best dental benefits for your dog, here’s a quick run-down on what to include on your pooch’s menu to keep their teeth and gums in tip-top condition.
Dental diet for dogs - what's good for them
Raw meaty bones
Raw meaty bones are an excellent addition to your dog’s diet as the chewing does a great job strengthening the muscles in their jaw and scrubbing their teeth clean. They’re also packed with calcium for strong teeth and probiotics and natural enzymes to fight bacterial plaque and bad breath.
Unlike wet dog foods, dry kibble requires a lot more chewing, which means - you guessed it - better plaque removal. Opt for a larger kibble size that your pooch has to chew to stop them from hoeing it down whole.
Organ meats are loaded with valuable antioxidants which prevent free radicals from damaging healthy cells and tissue in the body—known as oxidative stress. Organ meats are also particularly high in the Coenzyme Q10 antioxidant which has been linked to the prevention of periodontal disease.
Fish is an excellent source of fatty acids (namely Omega-3) which support all-round good health, as well as doing a great job managing periodontal inflammation.
Cranberries are high in biologically active compounds such as phenolic acids, flavonoids, condensed tannins and anthocyanins which have excellent cavity-fighting properties, preventing the formation of plaque and acid and making it hard for plaque to stick to the tooth’s surface.
Some veggies including fennel and broccoli are very valuable for dental health. The anti-inflammatory effects of fennel is great for treating gingivitis and keeping bad breath at bay, while broccoli is rich in folic acid which is known to support healthy gum tissue and prevent periodontitis.
Herbs including parsley, mint and dill have antimicrobial properties which make fantastic natural breath fresheners.
Dental dog treats
Dental dog treats are super chewy and made to scrub the teeth clean and trigger the production of bacteria-fighting saliva.
What foods are bad for your dog’s dental health?
There are a few ingredients you’d never find in a dental diet for dogs, such as:
Cooked bones can not only chip and break your dog’s teeth, but they can be dangerous if swallowed as they could splinter or get stuck.
While the pH in dogs’ mouths makes it harder for them to develop cavities, it is still possible if they have too much sugar.
While you may think it’s fine to give your dog a chunk of ice to lick on a hot day, if your pooch chews on it too hard, it could lead to a tooth fracture.
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