Brushing your pet's teeth is often overlooked as part of maintenance and should be done more often than you think. For dogs and cats, it is recommended to brush at least three times a week - ideally every day. Here's a quick challenge that can help your pet get used to the experience:
Gently pet and scratch their snout and slowly lift their lip for about 30 seconds. By doing this, your pet will get used to you handling their mouth and they will less likely act defensively.
Reward with a treat at the end of the session.
Repeat the challenge from day one and then gently run your finger or a finger toothbrush with a small amount of pet toothpaste over your pet's teeth. This should only take about 30 seconds.
Reward with a treat afterwards.
Repeat day two, adding 15 seconds of time.
Don't forget to reward your pet!
Run your finger or finger toothbrush over their teeth for 30 seconds and then repeat in the evening for another 30 seconds.
Afterwards, you can give your pet a little treat.
Repeat as day four and don't forget to reward with treats.
Repeat as day five and add more gentle rubs to your pet's teeth.
After one week you will know if your pet is ready or needs more time to get used to it. If you feel that they are not accepting the brushing well, gradually increase the brushing time until you are able to spend one minute on each side of the mouth.