Dental Chews and Oral Hygiene
To keep your dog’s teeth in tip-top condition, abrasive chewing is required. Dog dentition is designed for a regular work-out to keep the gums healthy and teeth clean. Without regular chews or if fed solely wet or soft food, dogs will experience dental and gum disease due to an accumulation of food residue in the mouth.
During your dog’s weight transformation dental chews are advisable, especially if your dog’s primary food is wet or soft. One chew per week should suffice.
Please bear in mind the calorie content of chews.
Many chews are high in calories and can easily exceed your dog’s daily calorie intake! For example, pig’s ear chews and marrow bones have upward of 300 calories per 100g!
When feeding dental chews, you must account for them in your dog’s daily calorie allowance.
Diet Tip: Avoid extra calories by providing your dog with a chewy toy.
Common dental chews
|Dental Chew Type||Calorie Content|
|Rawhide/ Beef hide chews – plain||80 calories/oz 280kcal/100g|
|Greenies Dental chews Weight management (teenie)||23 calories/chew 290kcal/100g|
|Greenies Dental chews Weight management (petite)||49 calories/chew 290kcal/100g|
|Greenies Dental chews Weight management (regular)||82 calories/chew 290kcal/100g|
|Greenies Dental Chews Weight management (Large)||132 calories/chew 290kcal/100g|
|Pedigree Dentastix toy/small dog||53 calories/chew|
|Pedigree Dentastix Medium dog||210 calories/chew|
|Pedigree Dentastix Large dog||410 calories /chew|
|Chicken neck with skin on||267 kcal/100g|
|Chew Toy Alternatives||Calorie Free!|
|Kong Chews||0 calories|
*Chew toys and plastic bones are a great alternative for dieting dogs. They are also a great option for dogs with dietary intolerance and for dogs who consume chews too fast to be of dental benefit.
One-minute Oral Health Check
Does your dog have a healthy mouth?
Lift you dog’s lips to view the gums and teeth. Then gently open your dog’s mouth to view the inner surfaces of the teeth and gums.
In a healthy mouth:
- gums are pale pink
- teeth are white
- there is no plaque or tartar build up (plaque appears as a yellowish scum which over time hardens to form tartar- a brown covering over the teeth and gum line.
- the gums do not bleed
- the breath is non-odorous.
Signs of oral and dental disease include:
- reddened inflamed gums
- plaque and tartar build up (yellow and brown build-up on the teeth and along the gum line)
- bad breath
- loose or broken teeth, difficulty chewing
- excessive salivation or drooling, dropping food
- oral pain- pawing at mouth, hesitant when eating.
If you notice any of these symptoms, a trip to your veterinarian is advised.
Conduct a regular dental check (on a monthly basis) to highlight dental issues before they cause unnecessary infection and pain.