"Should I be brushing my dog's teeth?"

This is a question we frequently get asked. Due to the diet we feed our dogs they rarely have built up any significant plaque on their teeth. That being said; Smudge, our 7-year-old Maltese/Yorkie, and Buddha, our 3-year-old Shiloh, are building up some plaque. They are eating the same diet we have been feeding all of our dogs for the last 12 years and are the only two that are having a plaque issue.

Just like people, dogs clearly have different genetic backgrounds. Both dogs have had their teeth cleaned once by our veterinarian and did just fine.

Most of you know us and know how holistic we are with ourselves and our dogs, so we really don't want to subject them to anesthesia if at all possible. We have never routinely brushed any of our dog's teeth, but we are looking for ways to improve their oral care to prevent a build up of plaque. Recently a client introduced us to a product that they had been using on their dog with great results in removing and preventing plaque build up, called ProDen Plaque Off. We did some further research and decided to try it on Smudge and Buddha. We ordered a container of it and began using it. It's an all natural seaweed powder that you put in their food. The company states that results may not be seen for eight to 12 weeks so we'll keep you posted on how they're doing. We're taking "before" photos so we'll let you see the results after 12 weeks.

We're not endorsing this product but thought it was very interesting and worth a try. We are also beginning to brush our dog's teeth for the first time ever.

Ahwatukee Foothills residents Brad and Tamara Jaffe founded Team Canine in 1999, using non-violent training and modern day psychology to train dogs. Visit their Web site at www.teamcanine.com for more information. Contact them at (602) 954-8353 or info@teamcanine.com.



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