How to Clean Tartar From Dog's Teeth With No Vet

Oral hygiene is an important part of your dog's overall health as their teeth tend to become stained, yellow and covered with tartar. While humans brush their teeth several times throughout the day, dogs don't have that luxury and rely on us to help them maintain dental hygiene. 

Some dog owners are more responsible than others and brush their canine's teeth religiously. However, many pet parents fail to do it regularly, exposing their pets to numerous dental conditions. Taking your dog to a professional teeth cleaning can be expensive, so why not do it at home? 

In this article, we bring you ultimate tips and tricks to help you get rid of tartar from your dog's teeth for good. 

What is tartar? 

When calcium deposits in a dog's saliva mix with the plague, they form tartar. Over time, dog tartar can build up, causing tooth decay, tooth loss, gum disease and other gum-related conditions. 

Generally, hardcore tartar has to be removed by a vet who uses specialised tools. They will put your dog under anaesthesia while the work is performed. You can prevent this by regularly brushing your dog's teeth or using chew toys and dental chews. 

Removing dental plaque from a dog's teeth

Dental care for dogs – how to minimise tartar

You can remove plaque and tartar from your dog's teeth in multiple ways. Let's see how it’s done! 

Dog toothpaste 

When choosing a toothpaste for your dog, it's recommended to get one that contains coconut. This ingredient has antibacterial properties  and can help your dog fight off bacteria in their mouth. Coconut also has a nice flavour, leaving your dog drooling for more. 

Dental chews and sticks 

When looking for perfect dental chews and sticks, it's important to determine the right size complementary to your dog. This ensures that these items don't pose a choking hazard to your pet. 

Dental sticks with a star-shaped form enables them to effectively reduce plaque build-up and tartar from the teeth as your dog chews them. To boost your dog's overall health, the dental sticks you buy should contain vitamins and minerals like E, B1, B2 and B6, along with iron and zinc. 

Agility toys 

Agility toys can help your dog achieve good dental health since canines will spend a lot of time chewing and pulling on them. This way, they get their teeth scrubbed, preventing the development of tartar and plaque. They also promote healthy breath as your pet airs out their mouth. 

Interactive toys are designed to minimise the stress that comes with teeth brushing. Place peanut butter, dog toothpaste or small treats in the crevices to encourage your dog to chew. These toys are made to massage gums and protect teeth from tartar and plaque build-up. 

Fruits and vegetables 

Just like we should avoid candies to have healthy and nice-looking teeth, our dogs as well need to be careful with chews. Controlling the number of treats we give them might be a good idea. Opting for healthy crispy treats made of fruits and veggies can help your pet chew away the plaque and tartar build-up. 

You could get them crispy celery, beetroots and carrots. Many fruits and vegetables are packed with vitamin C, which benefits the dog's gums and surrounding tissue. 

Plaque Control for dogs

Kelp is a class of plant that has the broadest spectrum of trace minerals and vitamins. As such, it is an excellent natural multivitamin and mineral source. 

It contains a vast number of nutrients thanks to its ability to absorb minerals directly from ocean water. In fact, this plant doesn't need to have a root system to absorb nutrients. Instead, kelp does it through plant tissue. 

Swedish studies have discovered that a kelp meal and kelp supplements have the potential to reduce tartar build-up and dental plaque within a couple of weeks. Some English research indicates that the bacteria Bacillus licheniformis, which resides on the surface of this plant, releases an enzyme that can break plaque coating on the canine's teeth. 

We suggest sprinkling your pet's food with kelp teeth powder for the best results. Norwegian Kelp can help with gum diseases, dental diseases, eliminate bad breath and help your dog with overall dental health. 


Teeth brushing 

One of the most effective ways to remove tartar from your dog's teeth is brushing their teeth daily with a dog-safe toothbrush and toothpaste. Remember that brushing their teeth now and then won't help you solve the problem. You have to be diligent and persistent. 

Some dogs have a hard time getting used to having their teeth brushed. Take it slow and start by allowing them to taste and smell the toothpaste before moving forward with the brushing.  

Brushing Dog's Teeth

Oral gel 

Applying a product with your fingers is sometimes the best option when dealing with a restless dog. Use specifically formulated gel that removes plaque and tartar to apply it to your dog's teeth. After regular use, you should see results in 30 days. 

You won't need to brush their teeth because gel mixes with the dog's saliva and activates the ingredients that dissolve plaque and tartar. 

Dental spray

Dental spray can remove plaque before it turns into tartar. Your dog needs to be calm before you start applying the product. Spritz it directly onto the dog's gums and teeth. The dental spray will mix with canine’s saliva to form a film that breaks down plaque and calcium in tartar. 

Follow the instructions on the label to use the recommended dose for your dog's size. Dental spray should be applied 30 minutes after your pet eats. If your canine has an advanced tartar build-up, you may need to use this spray more often. 

The combination of daily brushing and dental spray will provide the best results. You can also spray your dog's chew toy if your pet moves a lot and you can't spritz their teeth and gums.

Give your dog a chewing bone

Bones can help soften tartar when dogs chew on them. Pick a bone that fits your dog. It shouldn't be small enough so they can swallow the bone or big enough that your dog can't chew on it. Raw bones could be an excellent solution for fighting tartar since they can't splinter and are less likely to damage your pet's teeth. 

But if your dog starts chewing the bone aggressively, consider taking it away to prevent them from fracturing their teeth. 

Use a plaque off dog powder

This type of product is very effective in removing plaque and tartar from your dog's teeth. It also helps you maintain your dog's oral hygiene and eliminates bad breath. Plaque off power should be used consistently, every day. 

Tartar will brighten over time and you will be able to scrape it off more easily with a toothbrush. Plaque off for dogs is convenient to use; just mix it with your dog's food.  

Some breeds develop more tartar than others 

Certain dog breeds are more likely to develop tartar than others. For instance, toy and short-nosed breeds have a particular mouth shape that doesn't allow their teeth to meet their jaw. This makes their chewing less effective, preventing them from removing food residue from their teeth. In this case, daily brushing is highly recommended. 

toothpaste for dogs

The best tooth brushing tips

  • Start early: You can start brushing your dog's teeth when they are eight weeks old. This is a great way to get them used to all those dental accessories.
  • Get your dog used to you: Before you even begin with the brushing, coat your fingers with something they like, like peanut butter and then rub your fingers across their gums. This way, they will get used to your fingers in their mouth. 
  • Be realistic: Canine teeth brushing requires time and a lot of patience. You will start by brushing only a couple of their teeth and then gradually work your way up.
  • Stay calm: If you are nervous, your pet will feel it. Don't forget to praise your dog throughout this process.   
  • Choose the right moment: pick a time of day when your dog is relaxed, like after a vigorous play session or after a long walk. 

Removing tartar from your dog's teeth can be a long and tiresome experience. But if you know the right techniques and use the products that work, you may not need professional assistance. Trying a few of these simple tips and tricks can help your dog get rid of tartar while keeping their dental hygiene in perfect order.