Bad Dog Breath: Causes and Treatment

Bad dog breath is a distinctly unpleasant scent. Unfortunately, many pet owners do not realize that their dog’s breath can tell them a lot about the health of their canines. So, what causes this problem, and how can you treat it?

As the top veterinarian in Mandeville, LA, our team here at VetNaturally explains the leading causes of bad dog breath. Consider the following information, then schedule an appointment with a vet near you.

Why Do Dogs Have Bad Breath?

As a pet owner, you probably receive many kisses from your puppy. However, the smell of rancid breath can be alarming. Try to avoid dismissing bad breath when it occurs.

While this condition is relatively common among older dogs, it could indicate severe problems for others. Your dog may be experiencing one or several underlying health conditions if you notice the sudden onset of bad breath. Consider taking your dog to the vet to rule out any concerning health risks.

A veterinarian may determine your dog’s bad breath is due to one of the following:

Hygienic Problems

Maintaining proper oral hygiene is just as important for dogs as it is for humans. Tooth decay, gum disease, and other oral health conditions may create sour or rancid odors in your pet’s mouth. Bacteria and food debris can encourage plaque buildup, causing persistent bad breath.

Fortunately, you can restore your dog’s oral hygiene relatively quickly with the right pet care products. Regularly brushing your pup’s teeth is an excellent way to promote better-smelling breath and healthier gums. A licensed veterinarian can help you select a toothpaste that suits your pet’s needs.

You should also schedule regular dental cleanings for your pets to avoid these problems. At VetNaturally, we use state-of-the-art digital imaging to get to the ROOT of the problem. Without proper imaging, you are only seeing the dirty white enamel of the tooth, but major problems lie below the gumline and should be examined each and every time your pet has a dental cleaning.

Poor Dietary Habits

Most pet owners know how hard it can be to keep dogs out of garbage, litter boxes, or other unsanitary places. If you notice bad breath, your pet may have gotten into something smelly. Poor dietary habits can also lead to digestive problems or other long-term health issues.

It’s best to train your dog at an early age to avoid feces, trash, and food waste while on walks and at home. Remember to feed your pup veterinarian-approved products so they maintain the best oral hygiene and digestive health. If you struggle to control your dog, consider asking your vet for tips to prevent unhealthy behaviors like eating garbage or animal poop. 

Diabetic Conditions

Bad dog breath may not always smell how you expect. Fruity and sweet scents may indicate canine diabetes. Although this health condition can be fatal when untreated, quickly addressing it can significantly improve your pet’s overall energy and comfort.

Monitor your dog’s drinking and urination habits. If they go for the water bowl more than usual, schedule an appointment with your veterinarian. They will conduct a physical examination of your pet to rule out diabetes or other underlying health conditions. 

Kidney Problems

Does your pet’s breath smell like urine? You should take it to the vet as soon as possible. This type of bad dog breath may indicate kidney disease, which can be tricky to treat without the proper medication and diet.

Liver Problems

Like kidney disease, untreated liver problems can lead to severe bad breath, as well as yellow gums or consistent vomiting patterns.

Stay calm and schedule an appointment with a vet. They will perform an examination and prescribe treatment for liver disease to help your furry friend recover.

Give Your Dogs the Care They Deserve

Don’t wait to schedule an appointment with your veterinarian. At VetNaturally, we are experts at treating bad dog breath and other related health conditions. Our veterinarians have years of experience providing effective, scientifically proven treatment plans for all canine breeds. Furthermore, we have advanced imaging and surgical training specifically for dental procedures (Please keep in mind that these dental procedures require anesthesia).

See how our veterinary services can help your pooch live his longest and happiest life.

Do you notice unpleasant odors coming from your dog’s mouth? Treat bad breath at VetNaturally at 985-718-9991. 

Don’t forget! February is Pet Dental Month. We will be offering discounted dental services for your fur baby. Visit our office in Mandeville, LA, for more information.

Dr. Ashley Geoghegan

Dr. Ashley Geoghegan, known affectionately as Dr. G, has spent a lifetime devoted to animal care. Dr. G graduated from the LSU School of Veterinary Medicine and served in the U.S. Army as a veterinary officer. At VetNaturally™, she practices Integrative Medicine, which is a combination of Traditional Chinese Veterinary medicine (TCVM) , canine rehabilitation and conventional Western medicine.