Bad breath in our pets can be more than just an unpleasant smell. It can indicate underlying health issues in their mouth or throughout their body. Understanding the reasons behind your pet’s breath is essential for their wellbeing.

Common causes of bad breath

The primary culprit behind bad breath in pets is periodontal disease. This condition arises due to the build-up of bacteria, tartar, and plaque, which can harm their gums, teeth, and oral ligaments, potentially leading to tooth loss. The bacteria residing on their teeth can also travel through their bloodstream, affecting their organs.

Bad breath can also be a symptom of:

  • Diabetes, which might make their breath smell sweet.
  • Kidney disease, where toxin build-up can lead to bad breath.
  • Cancer affecting the oral cavity.
  • Skin infections in or around the mouth.
  • Ingested foreign objects, causing digestive problems and bad breath.

What to do

If your pet’s breath isn’t fresh, book an appointment with your vet to identify the cause. You can treat periodontal disease with professional cleaning and at-home oral care, including brushing your dog’s or cat’s teeth with pet-friendly toothpaste. For other health-related bad breath, appropriate treatment should help.

Preventive bad breath

Like humans, good oral hygiene is essential for fresh breath in pets. To reduce the risk of periodontal disease in your pet:

  • Brush your dog’s or cat’s teeth with a soft toothbrush and pet toothpaste.
  • Choose pet food designed to support dental health.
  • Include dental chews in their daily routine.

The importance of regular check-ups

Once your pet becomes an adult they’ll need a yearly professional dental clean to remove plaque and tartar and check for cavities. Ask your vet if they offer the Best for Pet wellness plan to get a $250 discount on dental cleaning.