Golden Retrievers are loving, energetic family dogs. Their golden coats that can either be straight or wavy add to their beauty and make people fall in love with them. If you own a Golden Retriever, you would already know how loyal these canines are. Golden Retrievers – just like any other breed – demand care and attention from their owners.
One of the most important things you need to take care of is your Golden Retriever’s teeth. Brushing them is integral to your pooch’s health. Another reason to brush your Golden’s teeth regularly is to keep their breath fresh. Cleaning teeth regularly can also boost the longevity and happiness of your canine friend. Tartar and plaque not only cause bad breath but can also lead to loss of teeth. Dental hygiene issues may also lead to painful infections and life-threatening diseases that may damage liver, kidneys, and heart of your Golden Retriever. This is why it is so important for you to clean your Golden Retriever’s teeth regularly.
If you don’t know how to clean your Golden Retriever’s teeth, you are at the right place. We’ll guide you through the process of brushing a Golden Retriever’s teeth to ensure you do it right with your canine friend.
Cleaning a Golden Retriever’s Teeth
Get a Good Quality Dog Brush
You can find a variety of dog toothbrushes in the market. Good dog brushes have soft bristles that don’t hurt your pooch’s teeth and give you access to hard to reach areas. When choosing a dog toothbrush for your Golden Retriever, consider the size of your dog. A bigger toothbrush would be right for a large Golden Retriever, but if your pooch is young and small, you’ll need a toothbrush that easily fits into their mouth.
Finger brushes are also available in the market and these fit onto your fingers to provide better precision. However, we don’t recommend them since your dog can accidentally bite your finger while you are trying to brush their teeth. We also advise against using a human toothbrush on your Golden Retriever’s teeth since it can hurt your pooch.
Choose a Dog Toothpaste
Many different dog toothpastes are available in the market for your Golden Retriever. Never use human toothpaste on your dog’s teeth since they contain fluoride and several other ingredients that can be harmful to your pooch. Many dogs swallow toothpaste while their teeth are being brushed. Swallowing human toothpaste can cause vomiting, among other issues.
Your Golden Retriever might not like the flavor of the toothpaste you choose for it, so you will have to try multiple flavors to find the one that best suits it.
Use Your Hands to Make Your Golden Retriever Comfortable
When you are starting to brush your pooch’s teeth for the first time, take it slow as your Golden Retriever will take some time to get used to your fingers and hands in its mouth. Touch around your Golden Retriever’s mouth and use your fingers to touch its teeth. Your Golden Retriever might not like it initially, but it may get used to this after a while.
Put Some Toothpaste on your Fingers and Let Your Golden Retriever Lick it
Start the cleaning process by letting your Golden Retriever lick some dog toothpaste off of your fingertips. This way you will be able to determine whether your pooch likes the toothpaste or not. It is best to get two to three toothpastes so that you can try another if your Golden Retriever doesn’t like the first one. If your Golden Retriever likes the taste, it’ll likely accept it when you put it on the toothbrush and use it to clean their teeth.
After your Golden Retriever licks the toothpaste, rub it along the gums and teeth while lifting the lips of your pooch. Use the motion that you use while brushing. This will help your Golden Retriever transition to the use of a toothbrush.
Let Your Golden Retriever See the Toothbrush
Once your Golden Retriever has licked some of the toothpaste and you have used your fingers to put the toothpaste on their teeth, show them the toothbrush. Let your Golden Retriever inspect the toothbrush and lick some toothpaste off of it before you put it in their mouth. Praise your Golden for this behavior. By doing this, you can make your Golden Retriever accustomed to the toothbrush before you actually use it to clean their teeth. This way, your Golden Retriever won’t get scared when you use the toothbrush to clean their teeth.
Brush Some Teeth
Put some toothpaste on the brush and gently start brushing one or few of your Golden Retriever’s teeth. First, clean the teeth that are easier to reach.
To clean them, lift the upper lip of your pooch and place the brush gently on the teeth. Then, start brushing back and forth very slowly. This will help your Golden Retriever get used to the feeling of the brush inside their mouth and on their gums and teeth.
Some Golden Retrievers are receptive to brushing while others will be reluctant or will act aggressively. If your Golden Retriever acts aggressive or is reluctant, proceed with caution. Try brushing them with the help of a family member who can pet your Golden Retriever and help keep them calm. Also, use a soothing voice to keep your Golden Retriever calm. If your Golden Retriever continues to be aggressive, give them a break and try brushing the teeth on another day. If the same happens again, consult with your dog trainer for advice.
Brush the Outside of Your Golden Retriever’s Teeth
If your Golden Retriever is receptive to brushing, you can continue and start brushing the outside of their teeth. Place some toothpaste on the brush and gently start brushing the outside surface of the upper and lower teeth of your Golden Retriever. Keep increasing the number of teeth you are brushing until your Golden Retriever is comfortable having all of them cleaned. Try brushing along the gum line as this will allow your pooch to get used to brushing without you having to try to open their mouth.
Limit the teeth cleaning session to a few minutes. Praise your Golden Retriever in a soothing voice throughout the cleaning process.
Brush the Insides of your Golden Retriever’s Teeth
Once you’re able to brush the outsides of your Golden Retriever’s teeth in a single session, you can try brushing along the insides of your pooch’s teeth. Lift the upper lips and open their mouth. If your Golden Retriever is reluctant to open their mouth, apply gentle inward pressure. Once they open their mouth, brush a small part of the inside teeth. Go slowly and brush small areas initially. As your Golden Retriever becomes accustomed to brushing, you can move on to larger inside areas. Also, brush the tongue of your Golden Retriever.
Additional Tips for Cleaning a Golden Retriever’s Teeth
Start Cleaning Your Golden Retriever’s Teeth at a Young Age
Ideally, you should start cleaning your Golden Retriever’s teeth when it is just a puppy. This will help your Golden Retriever become accustomed to brushing. However, it won’t make a difference in the overall cleanliness of your dog’s teeth since they won’t have all of their permanent teeth until they are 6 to 7 months old.
Pick the Right Time for Brushing
Choosing a good time for cleaning your Golden Retriever’s teeth will have an impact on your success with the cleaning session. Try brushing your pooch’s teeth when it is relaxed. Since Golden Retrievers are energetic and playful, they might run around while you are trying to brush them. So it is best to try brushing their teeth after an exercise or play session. This way, they will hopefully be tired and won’t struggle with you.
Clean Your Golden Retriever’s Teeth Regularly
The more often you brush the teeth of your Golden Retriever, the more they’ll get accustomed to the brush and hands in and around their mouth. This will make it easier for you to clean their teeth over time. Ideally, you should brush your pooch’s teeth every day as this can prevent periodontal disease. If your Golden Retriever seems sensitive around its teeth, is bleeding orally or has loose teeth, consult a vet before you brush their teeth again.
Our Final Thoughts
We have shown you the entire process of cleaning a Golden Retriever’s teeth. Now follow our guidance to brush the teeth of your pooch to keep it healthy, happy and energetic. Try to clean your Golden Retriever’s teeth every day. If that is not possible, brush them as often as possible for you.