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Are you thinking of giving your dog a few mints as a way to freshen up their bad breath?
A furry friend’s foul smelling mouth can be very frustrating — there’s no doubt about that!
But don’t share Ice Breakers, Mentos, Altoids, Tic Tacs or any other type of mints.
While it may temporarily reduce your dog’s halitosis, there are several reasons why sharing is a bad idea.
Dogs Should Not Have Mints
In a moment we’ll talk about how to handle those unpleasant odors.
Why Breath Mints Are Bad
Giving your dog anything loaded with sugar, mints included, is obviously not recommended.
And these products (take spearmint or peppermint for example) also contain questionable artificial coloring, eucalyptus oil and menthol.
But there is an even worse ingredient common to breath mints.
Xylitol is a sugar substitute that is toxic for dogs. Diabetes as well as kidney and liver problems are eventual concerns, but Xylitol can also contribute to hypoglycemia and seizures.
It’s fair to say that frequent sharing will lead to health issues sooner or later.
Not to mention that your dog would be prone to developing cavities from eating breath mints. After all, they are much like candy.
Last, but not least…
It’s just a bad habit to get into! You’ll regret sharing once your dog begins to beg for mints.
Your Dog’s Dental Health
Make it your goal to find out exactly why your dog has bad breath.
Do they have dental issues?
Cavities or an infection, such as gingivitis, almost always results in halitosis. Gum inflammation as well as bleeding are visual indicators to look for.
One thing is absolutely certain:
You can’t rely on mints if your dog has some sort of medical problem, dental-related or otherwise. Get your buddy checked out!
Serious Underlying Issues
Not to scare you but nasty breath can also be an indicator that your dog has a gastrointestinal disease.
The mouth is part of the digestive tract, and infections in that area can give rise to bad odors.
Stomach cancer and kidney disease should be ruled out as well.
So bad breath isn’t always a hygiene problem. And, even if it is, giving your dog mints is the wrong approach.
Basic Preventative Measures
Bad breath is often a sign of food particles being left behind inside your dog’s mouth.
Food and the resulting bacteria can lead to plaque, just like in people, and this tends to cause the unpleasantness.
If so, your dog’s breath problem should be easy to handle.
You just need to regularly brush their teeth, with doggy toothpaste, to rectify the issue instead of using mints.
Look inside your pet’s mouth, periodically, to see if there’s any bleeding or swelling.
Are there any missing teeth? Other signs to watch out for are drooling and sensitivity around the mouth.
The Bottom Line
Don’t try to cover up your dog’s breath by feeding mints.
Brushing their teeth regularly and using doggy toothpaste as well as the right toothbrush will minimize the smell. It will also freshen their breath more effectively than mints.