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Brush your dog’s teeth daily, PDSA urges London pet owners

PUBLISHED: 13:00 09 June 2010 | UPDATED: 16:08 05 October 2010

Some dogs worry about their dental care...

Some dogs worry about their dental care...

DOGS in London could be suffering toothache and losing their gnashers unnecessarily through lack of dental care, warns the PDSA animal chaity which suggests owners brush their pet’s teeth daily, just like humans

By Mike Brooke

THOUSANDS of dogs in London could be suffering toothache and losing their gnashers’ unnecessarily through lack of dental care, a top veterinary surgeon warns.

One-in-four have dental problems, a PDSA animal charity survey has found.

The charity is suggesting pet owners brush their dogs’ teeth daily, just like humans.

“It’s wrong to assume pets will lose their teeth as they get older,” said their senior vet Sean Wensley. “There’s no reason why their teeth shouldn’t last a lifetime with oral hygiene.

“Tooth-brushing is effective. Getting young pets used to daily brushing can help make it a stress-free process.”

Health checks of 13,000 dogs across the UK in 2007 and again last year show a five per cent rise in dogs with dental disease, one-in-four of Britain’s eight million canine population.

London’s canines appear to be getting healthier with seven per cent fewer dodgy molers in three years. Their Scottish cousins north of The Border are also getting better, with bad teeth down by six per cent. Worst canine cavity hotspots are Northern Ireland and Wales.

A poor diet high in sugary treats is a major cause of canine dental disease, say the experts. Telltale signs are bad breath, yellow-brown teeth, bleeding gums, jaw swelling, food falling from the mouth, lack of interest in food, weight loss or excessive salivation.

The PDSA website is offering pet owners online video information which can be downloaded.

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PDSA TIP FOR PET OWNERS:

Brush the dog’s teeth daily. Some pets may find this stressful and are far from willing to let owners clean their teeth. Don’t despair—dental chews and dental diets are available.


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