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Keeping Your Dog's Breath Smelling Fresh

Davinia with a chew bone.
A build-up of odor-producing bacteria in your pup's mouth, lungs, or gut is what causes bad breath. If your dog persistently has bad breath, known as halitosis, it could mean that he needs better dental care or he has a problem in his gastrointestinal tract, liver, or kidneys. The American Kennel Club offers the following tips for helping to keep your dogs breath under control.

Treatment
- If your dog's breath has a strange smell, consult your veterinarian so the culprit of the bad breath can be determined.

- If your veterinarian finds that plaque is causing the unusual odor coming from his mouth, a professional cleaning might be in order. Understand that in order to clean a dog (or any animals) teeth in most cases they will need to be given anesthesia.

- If his diet is the issue (some fish oils will make your dog burp fish oil all day long), changing his regular food to something that is well balanced and healthy can do the trick.

- If the underlying cause is a gastrointestinal, liver, or kidney problem, your vet will determine the proper course of action through testing and diagnosis.

Prevention

- Make sure to take your pet for regular yearly checkups or more often if you notice something is just not right to make sure there are no medical issues that could cause bad breath or any other health issue, and so your veterinarian can monitor your pet.

- Brush your pets teeth regularly and be sure to use canine specific toothpaste since human toothpaste can upset a dog's stomach and fluoride really isn't good for dogs anyway. You can work your way up to a full toothbrush there are also finger brushes and

- Feed your pet a high-quality, easily digestible food. There are several school of thought on what your pet needs in order to keep their teeth healthy and not just fill their stomach.

- Provide your pet with hard, safe chew toys size appropriate chew toys. Your pets teeth also get cleaned by the natural process of chewing.