Bad Breath

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The causes, how to tackle it and when to seek a vet’s advice for your dogs and cats

After a long day at work, you sit down on the sofa and get ready for a night in front of the TV. You prepare yourself for a much-needed cuddle with your furry friend, and get the blankets ready for their imminent jump onto your lap. Then it hits you; that familiar smell of animal halitosis.

Though it’s widely accepted that animals won’t smell minty fresh at all times, it is fundamentally important to be aware of underlying health issues that could be causing a stink.

Bad breath is usually caused by a natural build-up of plaque, bacteria and tartar on the teeth and gums. Taking your pets for regular check-ups, feeding them quality, easy-to-digest foods and brushing their teeth often are all known remedies to tackle these odours. There are also many healthy treats available today designed specifically to improve this reoccurring problem.

However, persistently bad breath and unusual odours could indicate a more urgent need to visit the vet. The following issues could hint towards more serious medical problems:

  • Breath that smells like urine could be kidney disease.
  • Breath that smells sweet could be diabetes, especially if your pet is drinking and urinating more frequently.
  • Foul smells followed by vomiting, discoloured gums and a lack of appetite could be a liver problem.

Should you notice any of these issues, always consult your vet in the first instance. A simple solution could be available to you if you act quickly. Left untreated, gum disease could lead to a bigger infection or even tooth loss.

Should you be advised to visit a clinic, be ready to tell your vet about exercise habits, normal behaviour, oral hygiene and diet to help give them a picture of what could be going on.

If your dog or cat has suffered from bad breath, give us your feedback on what was done to tackle it. Leave a comment to recommend breath-busting remedies for all!