Dog Care

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How to Brush Dogs Teeth

By: | Updated: October 24, 2019

Regular brushing of your dog’s teeth can help you to prevent gum disease and improve their overall oral hygiene. However, getting our canine friends to comply with the act itself can prove challenging. In this article, we’ll be exploring how to brush dogs teeth.

Before You Start

Firstly, you need to make sure you have the right tools for the job. Pedigree recommends you choose your toothbrush size as follows:

  • Adult-sized toothbrushes for medium and large dogs
  • Child-sized toothbrushes for small sized dogs
  • Small special pet toothbrushes for toy or miniature sized dogs

Medium bristles are recommended and make sure you use dog toothpaste (never use human toothpaste). Make sure that you pick the right moment. You’ll be looking to create a brushing routine so if possible, try to pick a time where your dog isn’t too excitable. Before you get to work, dab some toothpaste on to the tip of your finger and give your dog the chance to lick it. This will help provide it with exposure to the taste before you start brushing.

How to Brush Dogs Teeth

How to brush dogs teeth section


  1. Dip the toothbrush into some water, add toothpaste onto the brush and spread it around the bristles. Let your dog taste the toothpaste before you start.
  2. Gently, keep your dogs muzzle shut to prevent it from biting down on the brush.
  3. Using the same hand that’s closing the muzzle, slide the lip on one side of the mouth upwards exposing the teeth.
  4. Start by brushing the longest teeth (canines) softly. Use a small circular motion. Gauge your dog’s reaction and if it’s in pain stop. Small amounts of blood is normal; excessive bleeding could suggest overly aggressive brushing or even gum disease.
  5. Adjust your grip and lift the lip on the other side of the mouth, again brushing the teeth on show.
  6. Move further back and proceed to brush to teeth in the back of your dog’s mouth.
  7. Make sure you brush both the top and the bottom sets of teeth in the back of the mouth.
  8. Focus on any plaque you notice attaching itself to your dog’s teeth.
  9. Give your dog signals of reassurance and praise throughout the brushing process.
  10. Brush for a total of two minutes if possible, at the end be sure to give your dog plenty of praise or even a treat.
  11. Repeat the process once a day.

If you find difficulty with the steps above, don’t be too disheartened. Dogs differ hugely in temperament; some owners may have no trouble while others may only be able to brush a few teeth for shorter periods.

Routine is key to making your dog comfortable with the process. The important thing is making progress each time you brush your dog’s teeth. Whether this means brushing a few extra teeth each time or for a little bit longer, you’ll eventually work your way up to brushing them all for two minutes. If brushing your dog’s teeth really isn’t an option, we’d recommend exploring other options such as dental chews for staying on top of your dog’s oral hygiene.

Whether you’re looking to brush your dog’s teeth to prevent gum disease or freshen up their breath, we hope you now feel comfortable with the brushing process.

About the Author:

Serena is the content publisher for Daydreamdog and a life long dog lover. Between walking them, writing about them and spending too much time liking pictures of them on Instagram, her day literally revolves around dogs! If you want to learn more about Serena click here.