Should I Be Concerned About My Dog’s Bad Breath?

As veterinarians with years of experience treating our furry friends, one of the most common concerns we hear from pet owners is about their dog’s bad breath. While it’s easy to dismiss as a mere inconvenience or a result of something they ate, persistent bad breath in dogs can sometimes be a sign of underlying health issues.

Why Does My Dog Have Bad Breath?

Dogs, just like humans, can develop bad breath for a variety of reasons:

  • Diet

If your dog has recently consumed something pungent, it’s natural for their breath to reflect that. Foods like fish or certain treats can leave a lingering odor.

  • Oral Hygiene

Just as humans can get bad breath from not brushing, dogs can develop halitosis from a buildup of plaque and tartar. Regular dental check-ups and cleanings can help prevent this.

  • Gastrointestinal Issues

Sometimes, the cause of bad breath can be traced back to the stomach. Gastrointestinal problems, or the consumption of non-food items, can result in an unpleasant odor.

  • Underlying Health Concerns

Persistent bad breath can be a sign of more serious health issues, including diabetes, kidney disease, or liver problems.

According to the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA), “Periodontal disease is the most common dental condition in dogs and cats – by the time your pet is 3 years old, he or she will very likely have some early evidence of periodontal disease, which will worsen as your pet grows older if effective preventive measures aren’t taken.”

What Should I Do About My Dog’s Bad Breath?

If you notice that your dog’s bad breath persists despite a change in diet or improved oral hygiene practices, it’s essential to consult with a veterinarian. We can conduct a thorough examination, recommend specific treatments or interventions, and rule out more severe health concerns.

While occasional bad breath in dogs can be normal, especially after eating certain foods, persistent or severe bad breath should not be ignored. It’s always better to be safe and have your pet checked out to ensure their overall health and well-being.

Tampa’s Friendliest, Most Comprehensive Veterinary Care is at Affordable Pet Hospital

If you are in Tampa Bay and have concerns about your dog’s breath or any other veterinary needs, don’t hesitate to contact Affordable Pet Hospital at (813) 991-9898. You can also request an appointment online. We’re here to help with all your pet care needs, including keeping your pup’s breath as fresh as possible!