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When we took Carter to the vet just a few weeks ago, the doc sang his praises. From a healthy weight to clear eyes, our boy is a total champion. While we have a lump to keep an eye on, the vet’s only other health comment was his teeth. Like humans, as a dog ages, their teeth can be a huge health indicator.
In his 5½ year life, our catahoula-mix rescue has taught us about responsibility, patience, and the benefits of owning a pet. While his teeth are good, they are certainly a point of his physical care that we must tend to. Good tooth care means Carter will not have to have teeth removed- hindering his ability to eat… and our boy loves to eat! Knowing that we were already doing great things for him reminded me: how many dog owners wonder what I did years ago: what do I use to clean my dog’s teeth?!
Homemade dog toothpaste
What you will need:
1 beef bouillon cube
1/4c organic coconut oil
3T baking soda
- In a small ramekin, dissolve one bouillon cube in 1T of water. Bouillon is used to make the paste taste better- if your pup would prefer chicken, go ahead and use that!
- Add baking soda to the bouillon and stir.The baking soda acts as an abrasive to remove plaque from your dog’s teeth.
- Continue to mix and add cinnamon. This is to help make your dog’s breath smell good.
- Finally, add your coconut oil and stir until your mixture is even.
Your coconut oil ties all of the ingredients together, and is safe for your dog. Go ahead and put your toothpaste in an air tight container and store in the refrigerator (I add a label so no one gets confused)! When you are ready to use, just take a knife and add a pea-size amount to your dog’s toothbrush- NEVER DRIP THE TOOTHBRUSH IN! It’s OK if your pup swallows this toothpaste, it won’t hurt him or her. Just make sure they don’t swallow any more than what is on the brush.
Ready to brush!
- Make sure your dog is in a comfortable position.
- Put a pea-sized amount of homemade toothpaste onto a toothbrush. Start spreading the toothpaste all over your dog’s teeth. Brush your dog’s teeth in small circles, scrubbing at all the areas where plaque has built up. Make sure to take care of the back teeth and the sides of the teeth touching the gums. This is where the nasty stuff is mounting causing the bad breath.
- When you’re done brushing, wipe your dog’s teeth using a clean, damp washcloth- and let your pup drink some water to wash it all away.
Keeping teeth healthy in between:
In between brushing, which we do 2-3 times a week, I rely on Purina DentaLife. These daily treats are one of Carter’s favorites… and he has no idea they’re actually my dog-parenting back up! (Like other family members, sometimes I have to cheat his health into a treat!)
Shopping for our family can be a daunting chore. If you’re like so many of us out there, you’re always looking for the best for your family- and shopping for everyone, from baby to pet, can mean multiple stops to complete. Between budgeting time and money, and menu planning, we’ve ended up at Stop & Shop for many of the better-for-you staples that round out each day.
I am thrilled that I found my Purina DentaLife at our local Stop & Shop to save time from running from “human” to “pet” store… shopping at a family store- where all of my members are taken care of- is a huge time saver! Knowing I can get the best for my whole family in one place is, truly, priceless.
A family affair
Teaching this love of animals to our kids means giving back- especially this time of year.
It’s getting cold and the nights are longer. Sadly, some people are looking to save money and for them, that means dropping their pets off at a shelter. Scooping up an extra bag of pet food to deliver to your local shelter can mean the world to your kids. Imagine that one good deed- how it resonates with them?
My girls talk for days on end about how they helped feed animals and how they got to visit with these furry friends. We delivered two bags of food, one Purina Dog Chow Natural and one Purina Cat Chow Natural- “Because we have a dog and want a cat,” Addie tells me.
And getting to pet this adorable chocolate lop-eared bunny, Gino, was pretty great, too!
Save on pet care:
Purina DentaLife was launched this year and features a range of oral maintenance treats for both cats and dogs. Loving your pet means everything from tail to teeth. Having backup for days when you can’t wrangle your four-legged family member into a toothbrushing, it’s a relief to know they’re still having the care they need.
To get your hands on these treats, scoop up your Sunday paper this weekend! In it will be an insert highlighting money-saving coupons on Purina Beyond products like wet and dry dog and cat food! You can also save on Purina DentaLife now, but clicking HERE!
What’s your best pet-care backup? Share your secrets in the comments!