Top 5 Dog Dental Chews in 2017
Taking care of your dog’s dental hygiene is an important part of helping your dog live a long, healthy life. Cleaning your dog’s teeth routinely and feeding a quality dry kibble are ways you can help her maintain a healthy set of pearly whites. There are also a lot of dog dental chews available on the market.
Research from Rutgers University has shown that dental care treats can help significantly reduce oral bacteria, thus fighting against plaque and improving your dog’s breath (phew!) So, how do they work? And which one is best? Read on to find out!
The Benefits of Dog Dental Chews
Just as with humans, dogs can suffer from oral problems, such as:
- Bad breath
- Buildup of plaque
- A hard yellow or brown residue on teeth (tartar)
- Swollen, bleeding, or irritated gums
- Pain, which can lead to irritability and aggression
- Gum (periodontal) disease
Unfortunately, studies show that 80% of dogs have some stage of gum disease by the time they are 3 years-old. Gum disease can lead to more severe health problems. If bacteria get into the bloodstream, the heart, kidneys, and liver can be damaged, which can lead to life-threatening health issues such as heart disease.
It doesn’t have to get that far. By sticking to a teeth-cleaning routine, you can help your dog live a longer, happier life. Dog dental chews can play a big part in this, reducing plaque and tartar buildup, cleaning teeth and gums, and freshening breath.
Taking Precautions with Dog Dental chews
Make the right match
Size and texture
When choosing a dental care chew for your dog, you should make sure that you get the right size for your dog. Products will usually come with a guide to finding the right one for your dog.
It is also important to check out how hard or soft it is. Teething puppies, for example, who tend to gnaw on things to alleviate their teething discomfort, will need softer materials so as not to hurt their gums. So will dogs with softer teeth.
Adults, on the other hand – particularly more aggressive chewers – can cope with tougher materials.
One dog’s perfect chew might not be the same as the next dog’s – they may prefer a particular shape or flavor. So, it could be a case of trial and error with your dog.
Another point to make here is that if your dog has allergies to certain foods or special dietary requirements, be sure to thoroughly read what the product contains. If your dog is allergic to a certain protein, for example, there are plenty of vegetable-based dental chews. Or if she is overweight, opt for one that is low in fat.
Keep the calories in mind
Dental chews can be great for your dog’s oral hygiene, but you don’t want her piling on the pounds! Make sure you read the daily recommended intake – usually it’s one chew a day.
Read the ingredients list
According to veterinarian Dr. Becker, some dog dental chews on the market contain toxic preservatives and chemicals which can have a cumulative effect and cause health problems in your dog. So, it’s important to check the ingredient list. All of the chews in this review are non-toxic and safe for your dog.
Just to be on the safe side, you should always supervise when your dog chews, especially if it’s a new product, or your dog is new to the business of gnawing on these chews.
My Top 5 Dog Dental Chews in 2017
#1 Greenies Original Dental Chews
5 sizes: teenie, petite, regular, large, jumbo
These adult dental care chews from Greenies are popular among dog owners and come recommended by veterinarians for at-home oral care.
They have a texture that is designed to clean all the way down to the gumline, controlling plaque and tartar buildup as well as bad breath.
They are made from soluble, natural ingredients that allow for easy digestion and contain added vitamins and minerals. These treats are also very high in protein and low in fat, so they are a good choice for overweight dogs.
Greenies dental chews come in a wide range to suit all types of dogs. They cater to toy breeds all the way up to giant breeds, and they also have weight management, hip and joint health, and grain-free varieties.
These Greenies Original chews are made with wheat, so if your dog is allergic, you should opt for their grain-free variety.
#2 BLUE Dental Bones
4 adult sizes: mini, small, regular and large breed;
2 puppy varieties: mini and regular
Blue Buffalo is a well-respected pet food brand with years of experience producing super nutritious food for dogs.
Indeed, while these dental bones help freshen your dog’s breath and keep her teeth sparkling clean, they also come with added health benefits, which Blue Buffalo is one of the few to offer in dental care chews.
- Glucosamine and chondroitin to promote joint health
- Taurine to help keep your dog’s heart healthy
- Essential vitamins to support her immune system.
Pretty impressive, isn’t it? They’re also low in fat!
What’s more, here’s some very good news for dogs with allergies. BlUE bones do not contain:
- Chicken or poultry by-product meals
- Corn, wheat or soy
- Artificial preservatives, colors, or flavors
These treats are not completely grain-free, however, as they are made with rice.
#3 Zuke’s Z-Bones Edible Grain-Free Dental Chews
3 sizes: Small, medium, large
Zuke’s invites you to “fight doggy breath the natural way,” both in the mouth and in the gut, with their chewy dental bones. This is because all of their ingredients are completely natural and safe as well as beneficial to your dog’s digestive health.
Their popular Apple Crisp flavor is loaded with nutritious apple, spinach, turmeric, while natural fresheners parsley, rosemary, alfalfa, and fennel help to clean the mouth and freshen breath. These grain-free treats are potato-based, so they are a great choice for dogs with allergies to grains.
Zuke’s claim that their bones have an “ideal” texture to help polish teeth and maintain healthy gums. These bones come in other zingy flavors, including berry, cherry, and carrot.
#4 Natural Balance Dental Chews L.I.T. with Duck Meal Formula
3 sizes: Toy, small, medium/large
Natural Balance is another top pet food manufacturer with decades of experience crafting premium pet food.
These Limited Ingredient dental chews are made with a limited amount of premium ingredients for dogs suffering from food allergies. This means there is only one source of protein (duck meal), fat (glycerin), and carbohydrate (potato starch), plus it’s grain-free. They are a great addition to Limited Ingredient Diets.
They are specifically formulated with unique grooves to promote healthy teeth and gums by encouraging your dog’s natural chewing instinct. This helps reduce plaque and tartar and freshens breath.
#5 Get Naked Super Antioxidant Dental Chew Sticks
2 Sizes: small, large
Last but not least, Get Naked manufacture a large range of dental chews, including treats for digestive health, joint health, and weight management. This Super Antioxidant variety seems to be one of the most popular among customers.
It forms part of a line of immune health treats and supplements, fortified with omega fatty acids and superfoods such as blueberries, cranberries, and green tea extract. These superfoods are rich in antioxidants, which help prevent cell damage caused by free radicals as well as support your dog’s immune system.
The ridged design of the chew encourages natural chewing action, helping to clean teeth by removing plaque and tartar buildup, while peppermint and parsley naturally freshen breath.
Looking after your dog’s oral health is part of ensuring she lives a long, healthy life. Dental chews can help keep up a teeth-cleaning routine. When choosing one, make sure you get the right size, take into consideration special dietary requirements, preferences, and be sure to read the ingredients to check for any nasties.
Here I have recommended some top dog dental chews on the market today. Just remember, what works for one dog may not work for another, however. So, just in case, be prepared to try a few products before you find the right one. Happy chewing!