We love our dogs. We love them so much we just want to rub their bellies and pat their heads and have them keep our feet warm on chilly days.
They enrich our lives in so many ways, and they don’t require all that much from us in return. Perhaps I’m biased, but dogs really are just the greatest.
If we dog parents have just one teeny-tiny complaint, though, it has to be that sometimes our adorable little pooches start to develop some really bad dog breath. Sometimes it seems to come and go, and other times it sticks around for way too long. And while you might think your own bad breath is the only kind that could embarrass you, when you see visitors go to pet your pup, smiling excitedly, only to turn away holding their noses in horror, you know right then and there that something has to be done.
Yes, I’m speaking from experience here. My 10-year-old American bulldog named Pie has some raunchy, stinky breath and pretty much the only person who will still kiss him is my 5-year-old son, who will pretty much put anything in his mouth — well, except for his actual dinner.
Either way, I’ve had to try a few tricks to cure my pup’s stinky breath. I know there are tons of products you can buy for issues like this. However, most of them have a lot of unknown ingredients that can lead to other health problems in animals. I wanted to see what I could do using a natural approach, and it turned out to be a worthwhile experiment.
Here’s what I tried.
The first method I attempted to cure Pie’s stinky breath was some apple slices. I had read that they are hydrating (for both people and dogs), and I liked that it was an easy and natural fix! He also gobbled them right up. Alas, they didn’t do a thing to help out with this embarrassing problem.
I continued to try the food route for a while because it was simple enough to give my pup a handful of something crunchy or pop it in his bowl. Not all dogs like fruits and veggies, but this boy will gobble just about anything. Carrots didn’t quite do the trick, either. Still, though, they’re a tasty treat!
I had an old tub of dog probiotics that I used to give to Pie when he was getting frequent rashes. It’s easy to use because you can just sprinkle the powder in a dog’s food, and probiotics are said to relieve a whole variety of common problems. But honestly, I didn’t get very far with the probiotics because when I put them in Pie’s food, he stopped eating it. I tried his water, but he wouldn’t drink it. The powder must not taste very good.
Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar is said to have tons of benefits for people. But I was nervous to give it to my dog. I talked to my friend, a vet tech, and she said it can’t hurt — it’s made from apples, after all, and it’s supposed to be good at fixing digestive issues. So I put a tiny bit into Pie’s water bowl. Again, he didn’t want to touch it. Who knew he was so picky?!
Coconut oil can be used for just about anything! From skin issues to digestive ones, it’s one of those great cure-alls. And I found out there are specific brands for dogs, too! But for this experiment, I just grabbed my own jar of coconut oil out of the cupboard and mixed a couple of teaspoons into Pie’s food. He gobbled it right up. However, I didn’t notice a change in his breath.
Natural Dog Treats
I didn’t want to spend a whole lot of money on this whole dog breath venture. Plus, I wanted to keep everything I gave my dog on the natural side. However, I had heard about a brand of natural dog treats that were supposed to work. So I looked into a couple of brands.
I’m a big believer that you can cure a lot of common problems with food, but it seemed like nothing I had around the kitchen was working for my dog’s breath. So first I tried a popular brand of dog treats called Greenies.
They definitely helped more than the other methods I tried, so much that I noticed it right away. Still, there was one more brand that helped a bit better than all the rest.
Bones & Chew Dental Sticks
The last item I tried to help poor Pie clear up his terrible, horrible, no good, rotten, stinky dog breath was a brand of all-natural dental treats called Bones & Chews. I found the item online, and they weren’t super expensive like a lot of products for dog dental care can be.
At $9.99, I figured it wasn’t too much to shell out. So I bought the dental chews and started giving Pie a couple a day throughout the day. Immediately, I noticed a huge difference in his breath. It didn’t have people running for the hills. Plus, he likes to eat them, and they’re pretty affordable.
It’s definitely good news for Pie. But really, it’s good news for everyone who wants to snuggle him up. I mean, who wouldn’t? Look at that sweet little face!
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