I’ve written about dental care many times because it is such an important factor in overall health of your pets. Periodontal disease can lead to heart valve disease and heart failure, kidney failure, and infection throughout the body. 80% of pets have periodontal disease by age 3.

By addressing dental care when your pet is young, you can help prevent tartar and plaque from accumulating. Once your pet has periodontal disease, it is important to have professional dental care, including cleaning under anesthesia. Non-anesthetic dental cleaning is merely a cosmetic procedure that does not provide good dental health.

At-home dental care should be performed by brushing or applying a dental gel, spray, or drop. Reviews on most products are mixed. Unfortunately, it is impossible to know how advanced the pet’s dental disease has become, how the pet owners are administering the product, how consistently they are using it, and which product they’re using. As a result it’s really hard to tell how well they work unless you try them yourself. Dental products will probably not eliminate the need for professional dental care, but should keep the mouth in better shape between professional cleanings.

No dental product on the market will fix this problem.

When shopping for pet dental products, READ THE INGREDIENT LABEL. Certain ingredients should be avoided, including glycerin, sorbitol, dyes, alcohol, chemical preservatives, potassium sorbate, zinc gluconate, sodium benzoate, polysorbate, salt, xylitol, chlorhexidine, paraben, and others.

Here are the ingredients of some popular products on the market. Some are sold in veterinary clinics across the country. (Particularly the last three!) Personally, I would not use ANY of these products. Some of the companies have tried to make their products appear to be “natural” and “healthy”, but then they sneak in ingredients that are potentially toxic. BUYER BEWARE. If water is listed as the first or second ingredient, you are paying a lot of money to buy water.

Active Ingredient: 0.12% Chlorhexidine Gluconate Other Ingredients: Glycerin, Purified Water, Sorbitol, Flavor, Methyl paraben (a preservative), Zinc Gluconate, FD&C Blue #1.

Ingredients: 
Purified Water, Glycerin, Potassium Sorbate, Citric Acid, Cetylpyridinium Chloride, Chlorophyll, Zinc Gluconate, Green Tea Leaf Extract

Ingredients: Proprietary Blend of All Natural Ingredients: Grapefruit Seed Extract, Grape Seed Extract, Neem Oil and Rosemary Oil, Thyme Oil, Peppermint Oil, Natural Grain Alcohol

Ingredients – Distilled water, Ethyl alcohol 25%, Lamiaceae (herbal Mint extract) and Rosaceae (herbal Rose extract) in trace elements

Ingredients: purified water, aloe vera extract, peppermint, spearmint, glycerin, sodium benzoate, potassium sorbate, baking soda, and stevia

Ingredients: Grape seed extract, grapefruit seed extract, peppermint oil, rosemary oil, neem seed oil, thyme oil, and grain alcohol

Ingredients: Water, Glycerin, Sodium Benzoate, Potassium Sorbate, Sodium Hexametaphosphate, Polysorbate 20, Zinc Gluconate, Sodium Ascorbal Phosphate, Peppermint Oil, Citric Acid, Sodium Copper Chlorophyllin

Ingredients: Water, Sorbitol, Polysorbate 20, Flavor, Sodium Bicarbonate, Tetrasodium Pyrophosphate, Lysozyme, Proteases, Thymol, Chlorophyllin, Camellia Sinesis Leaf Extract, Sodium Chloride, Zinc Gluconate, Cetylpyridinium Chloride 

Ingredients: Water, Glycerin, Sorbitol, Sd Alcohol 38B, Flavor, Chlorhexidine Gluconate, Poloxamer 407, Zinc Gluconate, FD&C Yellow #5, FD&C Blue #1.

Ingredients: Purified water, Glycerine, Xylitol, Polysorbate 20, Sorbate of Potassium, Emilgase, Zinc gluconate, Sodium benzoate, FD&C Blue #1, FD&C Yellow #5, Chlorhexidine gluconate

Ingredients: Glucose Oxidase, Lactoperoxidase, Sorbitol, Purified Water, Dicalcium Phosphate Anhydrous, Hydrated Silica, Glycerine, Poultry Digest, Dextrose, Xanthan Gum, Titanium Dioxide, Sodium Benzoate, Potassium Thiocyanate.

DR. JUDY MORGAN’S NEW ZEALAND DEER ANTLER VELVET ORAL DROPS (healthy ingredients)

Ingredients: New Zealand Propolis, Manuka UMF Honey (produced in NZ), Manuka Essential Oil, Cinnamon Oil, Peppermint Oil, Manuka Hydrosol, Deer Velvet Antler Extract

Available on Amazon or at www.drjudymorgan.com