When was the last time you cleaned your dog’s ears or brushed its teeth? These often overlooked areas of pet care are essential for the health and well-being of your dog.
Your Dog’s Teeth
Dogs need regular dental care. Buildup of tartar can cause inflamed, swollen gums and secondary infection that can lead to serious health problems. Dogs, one to three years old, should have their teeth brushed once a week. Dogs over three years old should have their teeth brushed three times a week.
Use a toothbrush that is made especially for dogs. They have long handles which allow you to brush the dog’s back teeth. Never use human toothpaste, use an enzyme toothpaste specifically made for your dog.
There are specially treated dental cleaning pads which can be wiped over the surface of the dog’s teeth. The enzymes in the pad do the cleaning.
Ear care is an often overlooked, but important area. Dirt and debris in the ear canal can lead to inflammation and infection. Routine ear care, using products which cleanse the ear of debris, help to dry the ear canal and assist in preventing otitis, a chronic inflammation and infection of the external ear canal.
Ear mites are small parasites which can invade your dog’s ears. These mites typically cause a dry, dark brown debris to form in the ears of dogs. Ear mite treatments kills only the adult mites, not the nymphs, (pre-adults). Effective ear mite treatment includes an initial series of treatments to kill the adult mites followed 10 to 14 days later by a second series of treatments to kill the newly matured adults.
Vitamins and Nutritional Supplements
On occasion your dog may benefit from vitamins and nutritional supplements. Older or sick pets may not consume enough food to provide adequate nutrition. Dogs recovering from surgery or chronic illness may need nutritional supplements in order to heal well. Even hard working dogs, such as guide dogs, may require supplements to say at their best level of fitness.
Sore and Irritated Skin
Dogs can suffer from skin problems associated with allergic reactions, skin diseases or wounds. We recommend the use of a “complete healing system” to provide deep healing for sore or irritated skin. This system is as follows:
Your dog should be shampooed with an anti-itch shampoo to cleanse and soothe the affected area and to prevent the spread of skin disease through bacterial infection. To start the healing process, it is vital that the scab or flaking skin be gently removed by using a medicated cleansing product. Trimming the hair from around the area allows the medication to reach the skin.
Watch for the formation of new tissue which will appear shiny and pink in color. This is an indication that the healing process is well under way. However, as the skin begins to heal, itching will increase. Use a skin relief spray to stop the itching and pain so that the delicate new tissue is not damaged by scratching.
Continue to promote deep healing with the use of hydrocortisone cream containing aloe vera and vitamins B and E which soothes and nourishes the healing skin.
Hot spots are localized areas of acute, moist and inflamed skin. Hot spots are usually set off by flea bite irritation, allergies or Survey with an irritating substance such as chemicals or harsh soaps. These spots are extremely itchy, causing the dog to constantly lick and scratch, making the spot worse.
The most important step in treatment of hot spots is to immediately stop your dog from further licking and chewing of the spot. A skin relief spray will help stop the itching and pain.
Moderate to severe hot spots, as well as re-occurring hot spots require veterinary attention.