Why It Is Important to Have Your Dog’s Teeth Checked

Dog looking straight with mouth open
Photo by Pixabay

You Go to the Dentist to Have Your Teeth Checked, Right, So Why Not Your Dog?

Ensuring dogs’ dental health is a crucial aspect of pet ownership. While it might not be the first thing that comes to mind when caring for our furry companions, dental care plays a significant role in their overall well-being. 

Dogs, like humans, are susceptible to various dental issues, including periodontal disease, tooth decay, and oral infections. Ignoring dental health can lead to discomfort, pain, and potential systemic health problems such as heart disease. Therefore, regular dental check-ups are essential to prevent your pet from acquiring a worsening situation.

In this article, we will explore why dogs should have their teeth checked, the importance of dental hygiene, signs of dental problems, preventive measures, and how veterinary professionals can assist in maintaining optimal oral health for our canine friends.

Start with Tooth Brushing

Toothpaste and toothbrush on a white table
Photo: SMS

Yes, you heard it right. Your dogs should brush their teeth regularly. But you need to intervene if they are having difficulty reaching their mouths with their paws.

Use toothpaste formulated for dogs and do it on a routine basis.

Additional dental care methods should also be used, such as feeding them a diet that promotes dental health, such as dry kibble or dental-specific diets, and giving them toys they can chew on.

Eating the Right Food is Essential!

Chicken Bone
Image by Rob Owen-Wahl from Pixabay

We all know that some foods we eat can harm our teeth. They may taste good, but bad things come along with them. Same with your pet.

Research what foods you can give your dog for healthy teeth. We’ll start by giving the dog a bone—an animal bone, that is, not those plastic ones.

How to Detect Bad Teeth

Dog owners must be aware of the signs of dental problems in their pets. These may include:

  • Bad breath: Persistent foul breath can indicate dental issues such as periodontal disease or oral infections.
  • Visible tartar buildup: Yellow or brown deposits on the teeth indicate the presence of plaque and tartar, which can contribute to gum disease.
  • Red, swollen, or bleeding gums: Inflammation and bleeding of the gums are common signs of gingivitis, an early stage of periodontal disease.
  • Difficulty chewing or reluctance to eat: Dental pain or discomfort can make chewing painful for dogs, leading to changes in eating habits.
  • Tooth discoloration or loose teeth: These can indicate advanced dental disease and may require immediate attention from a veterinarian.

What Diseases can dogs get if Their Teeth are not Healthy?

Photo of canaine Lulu with red coat

Periodontal Disease

This is a common issue among dogs. It starts with the buildup of plaque and tartar on the teeth, which can lead to gingivitis and gum inflammation. If left untreated, gingivitis can progress to periodontitis, a more severe condition involving destroying the tissues and bones that support the teeth. Ultimately, this can result in tooth loss.

Regular dental check-ups by a veterinarian are crucial for early detection of periodontal disease. During these examinations, the veterinarian will assess the dog’s teeth, gums, and oral cavity for any signs of disease or abnormalities. 

Your Dog Health’s Summary

Black dog looking at camera
Photo by Charles

Being proactive about your dog’s dental health can help prevent serious dental issues and maintain your pet’s overall well-being. Regular dental check-ups and proper at-home dental care are crucial in ensuring that dogs have healthy teeth and gums throughout their lives.

Veterinary professionals also play a crucial role in assisting dog owners with dental hygiene. The vets can guide you on proper dental practices, recommend appropriate dental products, and perform thorough examinations and cleanings as needed. 

In cases where dental problems are detected, veterinarians can offer treatment options to address the issue and alleviate any discomfort or pain the dog may be experiencing.

Celebrate National Pet Day: How to Show Your Furry Friend Some Extra Love


French Bulldog
Photo by Karsten Winegeart on Unsplash

Every February 20th is National Pet Day and as a pet owner, you already know how important your furry friend is to you. Pets provide us with companionship, love, and loyalty that is unmatched. National Pet Day is a day dedicated to celebrating our beloved pets and showing them some extra love. 

In this article, we will share with you why we should celebrate National Pet Day, how to show your pet some extra love, fun activities to do with your pet, and pet health tips.

Why Celebrate National Pet Day?

Dog with food plate
Photo iStock. Credit Zontica

National Pet Day is a day to recognize the importance of pets in our lives and to appreciate the joy and happiness they bring. It also serves as a reminder of the responsibility we have as pet owners to care for our pets and provide them with the love and attention they deserve. Celebrating National Pet Day can help raise awareness of the importance of pet adoption, responsible pet ownership, and animal welfare.

How to Show Your Pet Some Extra Love

Pets are like family members, and they deserve to be treated with love and respect. Here are some ways to show your pet some extra love:

    • Spend quality time with your pet: Take your pet for a walk or play with them in the park. Spend time cuddling on the couch or give them a relaxing massage. Dogs love this!
    • Treat your pet: Buy a new toy, a special treat, or a new bed.
    • Give them extra attention: Talk to your pet and tell them how much you love them. Give them some extra belly rubs, ear scratches, or head pats.
    • Take your furry friend on an adventure: Go on a road trip, explore a new trail, or take your pet to the beach.
    • Make them feel special: Have a photoshoot with your pet, make them a homemade meal, or create a special space just for them.

Fun Activities 

National Pet Day is a great opportunity to try new activities. Here are some fun activities you can do with your pet on this special day:

    • Go for a hike: Take your pet on a hike and enjoy the fresh air and beautiful scenery. Make sure to bring plenty of water and snacks for both you and your pet.
    • Have a picnic: Pack a picnic basket and enjoy a meal with your pet in the park.
    • Teach your pet a new trick: Spend some time teaching your pet a new trick or command.
    • Take your pet to a pet-friendly restaurant: Many restaurants allow pets on their outdoor patios. Treat your pet to a special meal while enjoying some quality time together.
    • Go on a bike ride: Take your pet on a bike ride in a pet carrier or on a leash.

Ideas for Celebrating National Pet Day at Home

Dog posing
Photo: ©SMS

If you prefer to celebrate National Pet Day at home, there are many ways to make it special.  Besides these ideas mentioned below, all you have to do is think out of the box. 

You know best what your pet enjoys most so make it so!

Here are a few ideas to get you started:

    • Have a movie night: Choose a movie that features animals and snuggle up with your pet on the couch. Yes, animals can see other animals on TV!
    • Make homemade treats: Bake some homemade treats for your pet and enjoy them together.
    • Create a photo album: Compile all your favorite photos of your pet and create a special photo album or scrapbook.
    • Have a game night: Play some games with your pet, such as fetch or hide and seek.
    • Take a nap together: Take a nap with your pet and enjoy some quality cuddle time.

Ways to Give Back 

National Pet Day is also a great time to give back to animals in need. Here are some ways to make a difference:

    • Volunteer at a local animal shelter: Help care for animals in need by volunteering at a local animal shelter or rescue organization.
    • Donate to an animal charity: Donate to an animal charity or organization that supports animal welfare.
    • Foster a pet: Consider fostering a pet in need of a home. This is a great way to help animals in need while waiting for their forever home.
    • Adopt a pet: If you have been considering adopting a pet, National Pet Day is a great day to take that step and give a pet a forever home.
    • Spread awareness: Share information about responsible pet ownership, animal welfare, and adoption on social media to help spread awareness.

Pet Health Tips 

This is also a good time to think about your pet’s health. Here are some tips to keep your pet healthy and happy:

    • Schedule a check-up: Schedule a check-up with your pet’s veterinarian to ensure they are healthy and up to date on all vaccinations.
    • Provide a healthy diet: Make sure your pet eats a balanced diet that meets their nutritional needs.
    • Exercise regularly: Regular exercise is important for your pet’s physical and mental health. Make sure they are getting enough exercise each day.
    • Keep up with grooming: Regular grooming, such as brushing your pet’s fur and teeth, can help prevent health problems.
    • Keep them safe: Keep your pet safe by ensuring they are wearing identification tags, keeping them on a leash when outside, and protecting them from hazards such as toxic plants and chemicals.


National Pet Day is a day to celebrate our beloved animals and show them some extra love. Whether you choose to spend the day exploring new adventures or simply cuddling on the couch, the most important thing is to show your pet how much you love and appreciate them.

Remember to also take this day to think about the importance of responsible pet ownership and animal welfare. By making a difference in the lives of animals in need, we can help ensure that all pets receive the love and care they deserve.

Why Do Dogs Wag Their Tails?

Beagle Dog
Image by Denise Coyle from Pixabay

Wag the Dog

Does Fido go crazy when you come home? You can bet he does and this simple act of wagging his tail might seem like nothing more than a quirk of dog behavior, but there are other reasons too for wagging as our canine friends can show a range of emotions depending upon the situation they are confronted with.

As we have all experienced and most probably the most noticeable of all dog wagging is when Lulu wants to greet you or others, or maybe even other dogs. Wagging can occur when they want something from you as well, like food or to go outside, or when they just want to play.

This behavior is usually with other canine behaviors, such as barking, licking, and sniffing. 

So let’s start with a list of dog-wagging traits and then go on from there.

      • When they see you coming home. We are all familiar with this one and even when a new person comes knocking on the door. 
      • When they want to go outside. Maybe they need their walk, but also, for homeowners, it could be that they want to play in the backyard. 
      • When they see another dog. No explanation is needed here. This is normal expected behavior.
      • When they are happy.
      • When they want to play. When Lulu wants to play, you will know!
      • When they are running. This happens because when dogs run, their muscles contract. This causes their blood vessels to expand, which leads to increased blood flow in their legs and tails, subsequently causing the wagging effect.

Do Dogs Wag Their Tails When They’re Scared?

We have all seen and experienced that when a dog is quiet, his tail is relaxed, but when confronted with emotions, such as nervousness or feeling threatened, his tail starts moving. Most noticeable is that Casper shows fear. His tail may be positioned in a downward state, but this can vary depending on the dog breed.

When They Are Playing?

When two dogs are wrestling or playing, they will often wag as a sign of enjoyment and when they play with us humans, the same will show. Some experts go as far as saying that the direction of their wag is a sign of fright or happiness. 

Good Food

Dog with food plate
Photo iStock. Credit Zontica

No doubt Lassie (remember her?) was more than thrilled with excitement when she saw Tommy coming down with her favorite food. Our canine friends love it when there is something good coming their way and their tails tell us all.

It’s a Communication!

Whatever Rin Tin Tin (why in the world did they name him that?) wags, it is because he is communicating something to us or another animal.  Studies have shown something very interesting.

Canines will wag their tails towards the right when they are in a happy mood and their tail will move to the left when they are anxious or scared, and this is not just due to random body movement.

Same to our emotions being elicited from either the right or left side of our brains, similar reactions occur for four-legged friends, so when Fluffy moves her tail to the left, it is the right side of her brain that is causing her to do this.

Researchers have determined that a dog’s left side of the brain is related to good feelings, such as relaxation, happiness, or even love, and that is displayed by her tail moving to the right. Then, knowing that the right half of the brain is associated with bad feelings, Fluffy will move her tail to the left if she anticipates fear or anxiety, or some other negative emotion.

Tell That Tail

When it comes to wagging tails, there are many different reasons that a dog may do it. It may be because they are happy, when they are playing, or even when they are scared of another animal or human. 

Wagging tails are just one of the many types of a dog’s communication and when you know what your dog is trying to tell you, you can communicate better with them and both of you can enjoy an optimum relationship!




Why Do Dogs Eat Grass?

Dog on Grass
Photo: iStock

When this author was young, like five years young, I was in a park with my father. As we were lying on the grass, my father, I guess for fun, picked up some grass and ate it. He said you should try it sometime. Well, I did that day. Being human, I am glad to say nothing happened, but we humans in general don’t eat grass :-). 

With that said, have you noticed that as soon as you take your dog outside, he/she may run towards that freshly mowed lawn and begin to munch on the grass? Is this habit healthy? Is it normal? Let’s look at the theories and explanations as to why dogs have such a desire to eat grass.

Grassy Theories

One common hypothesis is that they do this to induce vomiting. Many think if a dog is feeling gassy or has certain things in his digestive system he wants to get rid of, he will chew on grass to induce vomiting. Unfortunately, there is not much evidence backing this theory. Less than 25% of dogs will vomit after eating grass.

Another and more simplified explanation is that they like it! Cats might be mainly carnivores, while dogs on the other hand are much more omnivorous. The average dog will eat anything if given the chance or if he is hungry enough. Wild dogs such as wolves and other canines dabble in plant-eating as well and also devour omnivores and herbivores whole, including the entire stomach contents.

Eating grass may also be a natural way for our domesticated canines to vary their diet. If your dog is eating a lot of grass, this may also be a signal of nutritional deficiency.  Like us, dogs cannot digest cellulose, the main energy source of grass. Dogs might just be grazing for a source of fiber. Some grass contains minerals such as phosphorus, calcium, and potassium which might explain why dogs only like to munch on only one certain type of grass. 

Is Eating Grass Healthy for Dogs?

Dog on leaves
Photo: iStock

A little grass-eating can be harmless if it hasn’t been sprayed with herbicides and pesticides. This can occur when your landscaper comes. Make sure your landscaper knows you have pets and inform him about putting harmful chemicals on your lawn. Most landscapers will put out signs on the lawn stating that it has just been sprayed with chemicals. They say your pet should not be on the lawn for at least 24 hours, probably 48 may be better after the lawn has been sprayed.

Also, you must make sure everyone in your house is aware of these dangers and not let the dogs out if you suspect the lawn was sprayed. My wife makes extra sure we know about the landscaper’s spraying and if we forget and let the dog out to the backyard, screaming like the woman in Psycho would seem tame.

What About Repeated Grass Eating?

If your dog eats a lot of grass and you are worried about his or her nutrition or digestion, it may be vet time. Be sure to ask the vet for advice on changes to your pet’s diet, but he might ask you to bring him into the facility. 

Bottom Line

Dogs eating grass is normal and it won’t harm their digestive system, but doing this exceptionally may indicate a possible issue. Contacting your vet for advice. A possible checkup would be the recommended way to go.


Dog Breeds You Would Love to Keep as Pets

Dog - Casper Official Post
Casper says “Hi” Photo: ©SMS – Photos of a Lifetime

Today we beginning a new series – Pets!

With 69 million dog owners and 45 million cat owners in the US, how can we not include these furry creatures in our articles? Especially when we can offer health-related information!

Our favorite is Maltese as noted by our photo of Casper. Playful and fun pets and cute as can be, but according to recent surveys, the five most popular breeds are listed below.

So let’s begin with today’s article on what dogs are considered favorites. (That doesn’t mean we don’t love all our pets!


Photo of boxer dog
Photo by Amber Turner on Unsplash

These dogs are trendy and are great at dog shows and are known for standing up on their hind legs and using their front legs to compete against their opponent. Because of this, they were, unfortunately, used for dog fighting – a large competitive game in Germany back in the 19th century, but we are happy to say that this ‘game’ if you call it that has been ruled illegal. 

They were the favorite choice for Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall who got one as a gift on their wedding day. People love keeping these dogs because they are active, fun-loving, great watchdogs, and have bright personalities. 


Photo by Fredrik Öhlander on Unsplash

Poodles are cute and fluffy canines with airy curls over them. But do not get confused with this endearing appearance, they may have curls but they are not just fluffy toys. Instead, they are very smart, clever, and very obedient. They are known to be one of the most intelligent dog breeds on the planet!

Poodles are loved mostly by women and girls because of their fluffy hair, obedient nature, and of course the variety of coat colors they come in. White, gray, black, and apricot – the ladies have a lot to choose from, and men do too!

French Bulldog 

French Bulldog
Photo by Karsten Winegeart on Unsplash

People who do not want to own a huge bulldog can opt for the small and adorable French bulldogs, called ‘frenchies’. These little cuties are very friendly and social.

If you want to own a pet to sit with you on your couch, a French bulldog would be a smart pick. They have square heads, bat ears, and wide eyes and are well-mannered, affectionate, and loyal dogs, but they can’t swim, so don’t bring them to your backyard or community pool! 

Their history goes back to the wealthy English in the 1800s and that status was maintained up to the early 20th century in the US.

Although they are called French bulldogs, we are sorry to announce that they don’t speak French.


Dog Rottweiler
Photo: iStock

The Rottweiler breed goes back to Roman times. They have a tough look, but they are extremely devoted, loving, and caring companions. Having a muscular build and size, Rottweilers are used by many for home security. 

Interestingly, their personalities intimidate people and one must keep an eye on them when they are around children. These dogs have a habit of bumping which can harm kids, so a word of caution there, but if you are looking for pets that will help keep your house safe and lovable as well, then a Rottweiler would be a smart pick. 


Beagle Dog
Image by Denise Coyle from Pixabay

Beagles are famous for their intellect and intelligence. Many law enforcement agencies use Beagles to sniff as they are exceptional hound (hunting) dogs.

In addition to intelligence, they are friendly and social around people. This is why many people prefer keeping them as pets and kids love them. If you are looking for a friendly pet with intellect, then investing in Beagles is a smart choice. According to research, these dogs howl a lot but it can be controlled by training them. 

What to Choose?

Dogs are known for their trustworthiness and faithfulness but don’t just go by these five breeds. Talk to friends and relatives who are dog owners and see what they have to say and then decide on which dog breed you would bring home for your pet!