I am a spaniel owner and fan of this dog breed. I aim to share stories and spread my knowledge about these great dogs.
My Cocker Spaniel Can Have Bad Breath
When I had my English Springer Spaniel, Lady, I hardly ever noticed any breath issues. This was sort of strange, seeing as she was an outdoors and farming kind of dog that would investigate pretty much anything with her nose and mouth. You can use your imagination as far as what those things may or may not have been.
Enter my English Cocker Spaniel, Luna. She comes from a showing background and is not as much of an outdoor dog as Lady was, but she has bad breath issues! Her breath can be a problem at times, especially when she showers me with all of those licks that I enjoy so much.
If you detect chronic bad breath in a dog, it could be caused by an underlying issue of dental decay or gum disease, and you should definitely book an appointment with your veterinarian immediately to get it checked. Another cause could be a gastronomic problem, or even possibly issues involving the liver or kidneys—not stuff to wait on or mess with. It could also just be time for routine dental maintenance such as a tooth and gum cleaning.
Enzyme Powder for Better Digestion
We brought Luna into our vet's offices, where my fiance works as a vet tech. They were able to determine that Luna had a clean bill of internal and dental health, which was a relief. The doctor suggested part of the problem could be due to improper digestion of her food. He suggested a powder included in her food called Rx Zyme by Rx Vitamin company. One small scoop from the container into her meals is the dosage.
Basically, the product is an agent to help aid in food breakdown, as well as helping with breath, and aiding in good digestive health. We definitely noticed an improvement after we started using it, but be sure to check with your vet to make sure this or any other supplement is right for your dog. We always keep Luna on an organic and natural food diet and avoid processed foods to help digestion and promote overall health as well.
Dog Dental Chews
Dog dental chew treats could be another option for some breath maintenance. Our vet's office gave us samples of the Oravet brand dog hygiene chews, which came highly recommended because they were seeing results with other clients. Problem is, Luna would not touch them. Once in a while, we will give Luna half of one of the Milk Bone brand chews, but they seem to have a lot of chemicals and not be the most organic natural option. So, we pretty much use those in strict moderation even though Luna likes them.
Face Washing and Grooming
Between grooming, for whatever reason, Luna seems to grow hair back around her mouth rather quickly. Before it gets long, we like to take our grooming clipper and very carefully, with a close guard on the clipper, buzz it back below the gums and down her chin. This simple maintenance makes it easier to help keep food particles and drool from getting around her mouth and in her cheeks. Between brushing and after meals, we also take a warm wet face cloth and wipe around her mouth and gums to help keep her as clean as possible.
While we have always brushed Luna's teeth, we have been more frequently brushing, making sure to really get inside of the mouth and around the tongue and spending more time while brushing. Luna actually does really well with getting her teeth brushed, and will wait patiently for us to be done, which is nice. However, if your dog is less than receptive to cleanings, and gives you a hard time with it, I included a great link below with lots of tips to get you going in the right direction.
Canine Tooth Brushing
- Brushing Teeth in Dogs | VCA Animal Hospital
It is estimated that over 2/3 of dogs over the age of three have periodontitis, an inflammation or infection of the tissues surrounding the teeth. Periodontal disease starts as gingivitis and progresses to involve the bony tooth sockets.
Oral Sprays, Gels, and Water Additives
You can also talk with your veterinarian about the different types of oral care and maintenance products on the market. Additives that are put into your dogs drinking water use enzyme systems to prevent plaque and odor-causing bacteria and attack biofilm. Gels further promote health by being applied to the gums that keep inflammation at bay from gingivitis and periodontal disease.
Breath freshener sprays use enzymes for anti-bacterial properties as well as fighting plaque. Oratene is a trusted name in the industry as far as quality of these products. Sometimes these practices can be used instead of brushing dogs that are difficult to hold while giving dental care. It's all about finding what's right for you and your dog.
Combating Bad Breath in Your Dog
This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. It is not meant to substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, or formal and individualized advice from a veterinary medical professional. Animals exhibiting signs and symptoms of distress should be seen by a veterinarian immediately.
© 2017 The Write Life
Louise Powles from Norfolk, England on May 09, 2017:
Luna looks a beautiful dog. I love Cocker Spaniels, they're gorgeous looking dogs.