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Dogs Teeth & Tartar

German Shepherd dog with mouth open

Dogs Teeth & Tartar Build up, and ignored, will lead to bad breath and eventually tooth decay, just as with humans.

Healthy Dog chew toy

Bacteria Build Up Can Affect Their Bite

Tartar build up and plaque are just the most visually obvious representation of an overabundance of bacteria growing in the mouth. Other symptoms can include:

  • Bleeding gums
  • Halitosis (bad breath)
  • Lethargy
  • Loose teeth
  • Loss of appetite
  • Pain when chewing
  • Pus filled nasal discharge or in the gum line
  • Red or swollen gums
  • Tooth loss
  • Unilateral swelling under the eye
  • Weight loss

Do Dogs Get Plaque?

Yes they do! Plaque is a sticky, colourless or pale deposit of bacteria that is constantly forming on the tooth surface. Saliva, food, and fluids combine to produce these deposits that collect on teeth and where teeth and gums meet.

The build-up of plaque can trap stains on the teeth, and it is also the primary factor in gum disease. Fighting plaque is a life-long part of good dental hygiene. Plaque can also lead to the development of cavities, which further weaken teeth. If dogs are not keeping their teeth clean on a natural chew it can harden into tartar

Dogs canine tooth with plaque

What is Tartar?

When plaque is hardened into calcified deposits on the teeth by mineral salts it is referred to as tartar

Tartar is a yellow to brown deposit that forms when plaque hardens on the tooth. Your dogs lifestyle will have a direct impact on their susceptibility to tartar build-up.

For many, these deposits build up faster with age. Tartar is easily noticeable because of its yellow or brown colour on teeth.

What Happens If I Do Not Care For My Dog’s Oral Health?

Gingivitis – When bacteria accumulate at the gum line in either plaque or tartar, they can cause inflamed gums

Periodontal disease – This is a disease which attacks the structure of the teeth, usually caused by bacteria; gingivitis often occurs concurrently with periodontal disease

Caries – Progressive decay and crumbling of the tooth or bone

Dental abscess – Pus that accumulates in the teeth or gums, usually caused by a bacterial infection

Do Dogs Visit The Vet And Have Teeth Removed

Sadly they do. A friend of our little old dog has recently had two trips to the vets to have teeth removed. It is an expensive business.

Newfoundland Loves Staglers Jawsome 9" Deer Antler Dog Chew





How To Clean Dogs Teeth

Home dental care is needed to help reduce plaque and tartar build up.

This is where Staglers deer antler dog chews, given after a meal, can make a huge difference to prevent plaque build up. This is one of the most effective ways to remove plaque before it turns into tartar.

Human Toothpaste is a definite NO NO. It contains ingredients that can cause an upset stomach when swallowed.

Offering your dog chew toys and dental treats that are specifically designed to help reduce or remove mild tartar is great.


Dogs Teeth & Tartar written by Staglers. Any Questions Just Ask John here



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