One of the most often overlooked areas in care of Pit Bulls involves dental health. It is important not only in caring for his teeth, but in also protecting his overall well being. Being able to chew food properly affects digestion, which can lead to all kinds of health problems for your Pit Bull. Learning how to care for your Pit Bull’s dental health needs at home can save you a lot of out of pocket expense over your Pit Bull’s lifetime.
American Pit Bull Terrier (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Believe it or not, you should try to brush your dog’s teeth at least once everyday. Just like you, your Pit Bull will have plaque and tartar that can destroy his teeth or lead to gum disease. It could result in your Pit Bull losing his teeth, or developing an infection.
If you haven’t already developed a dental hygiene routine for your Pit Bull, you may need to take it slow and easy to get him used to the idea. Begin by getting him used to you holding him and looking inside his mouth. If you have an older Pit Bull, just holding the dog long enough to look in his mouth may be a challenge at first. Once you get him comfortable with you holding him and looking inside his mouth, start lifting up his lips and moving his tongue around so you can actually see his teeth. These first couple steps may take your Pit Bull some time to get used to, so be patient.
Once he is comfortable with you messing with his mouth, see your veterinarian to get a toothpaste recommended for him. Start by using the toothpaste on your finger for a few days, to get him used to the taste and feeling of you rubbing his teeth. Your Pit Bull will probably enjoy this, especially if he gets flavored toothpaste. He will definitely love the extra attention.
Eventually, your Pit Bull will let you brush his teeth, which will help protect his teeth and health. Dental problems in Pit Bulls can be very painful for them, and can often be hard to treat successfully.
If by some chance you have a Pit Bull that absolutely will not let you near his mouth, let alone brush his teeth, there are some alternative ways to ensure his dental health. Your veterinarian can recommend a good dental rinse that can be added to your Pit Bull’s water bowl to help rid the teeth of debris. Chew toys will also help clean the teeth and keep his bones strong and healthy. Be careful when buying chew toys for your Pit Bull to make certain the toy isn’t hard enough to damage his teeth, and is large enough so he can’t get choked on it.
There are some dog foods now available that are supposed to provide dental care, which actually means that the food sticks to plaque and tartar as the dog chews, therefore getting it off the teeth.
Remember, that to provide proper care for your Pit Bull, you cannot omit his dental health. By taking the time to provide dental care when your Pit Bull is a puppy, you can start ensuring his dental health in the beginning, which will save you a lot of costly vet bills as time goes by.