6 signs of a happy cat
An expert-backed guide on looking after your dog’s teeth
Dog showing healthy teeth

Ask the Vet: Dental Care

At YuMOVE, we’re always committed to providing the best science-backed insights and solutions to support every pet along the path to wellness. That’s why we’re very happy to announce the fourth part of our ‘Ask the Vet’ series, where our expert in-house vet, Dr Jayne Laycock BVetMed MRCVS, answers your questions. So, are you ready to sink your teeth into some juicy dental Q&A’s? Let’s get started…

“Why is my pet getting smelly breath?”

This is a great place to start. Firstly, ‘smelly breath’ is a very general, catch all term for anything making your pet’s mouth smell!

Far and away the most common reason our pets get smelly breath, is due to dental problems. But it’s important to remember that dental issues are not the only reason your pet could have smelly breath. Just a few of the many other possible causes for bad breath include: a growth in the mouth, a foreign object stuck in the mouth (usually sticks, but I’ve seen all sorts!), and even some medical conditions.

We would always recommend checking with your vet if you’ve noticed your dog has bad breath.

“What is bad dental health and why is it happening?”

Poor dental health develops over several stages.

To begin with, a sticky bacterial film called ‘plaque’ naturally forms in the mouth, usually where the teeth meet the gums. If this plaque isn’t cleaned away adequately and regularly, it can harden over time to form ‘tartar,’ a tough brown deposit that sits on the teeth. Tartar then traps more bacteria and makes it even harder to clean the teeth and gum line. The result is smelly breath and sore gums.

Just like with us, our dogs’ mouths aren’t the cleanest places to begin with, as they’re constantly used for eating and drinking. This can cause problems to develop over time if we’re not diligent.

Happy, smiling dog showing off teeth

“Can I brush my dog’s teeth alongside using YuMOVE Dental Care Sticks?”


Our dental care sticks work in two main ways: the first is that the spiral shape is designed to reduce plaque on the surface of the teeth. This will work alongside brushing, to physically clean the teeth. Our sticks are designed to reach areas that are hard to get to with a toothbrush, which means that the two methods complement each other.

The second way our YuMOVE Dental Care Sticks help, is via our unique ActivBarrier™ soft centre, which helps to balance the bacteria in your dog’s mouth. Because of this, we don’t recommend brushing with any enzyme-based or antibacterial toothpastes alongside our chews.

“What is the best way to keep my dog’s teeth clean?”

A bit like with humans, brushing is the very best way to keep your dog’s teeth clean. However, brushing can be hard to do with some dogs, and it needs to be done regularly to be effective. To see the benefits, you must brush your dog’s teeth at least three times a week! We know this target can be difficult to achieve, so we’ve have developed our dental care sticks to be used alongside brushing, to support your pet’s dental hygiene as best as possible.

Dog about to enjoy a healthy meal

“How do dental care sticks fit in with a healthy, balanced diet?”

Our dental care sticks vary in calories depending on size, but have been developed to contain around 10% of a dog’s daily calorie requirement (in each size bracket). For this reason, we recommend adjusting your dog’s food accordingly (as is important with any extras!) The sticks have been developed from natural ingredients to be part of a healthy balanced diet, given daily for four weeks, and then given every other day. We know it can be a challenge to keep your dog’s weight under control, so that’s why we developed our sticks to be used every other day in the long term, as this will help keep calories down.

“Can I whiten my dog’s teeth?”

The white colour of teeth is generally cosmetic. It’s important to aim for strong, clean, healthy teeth, and it important to focus on this rather than tooth whiteness.

Discolouration can be linked to tooth health and plaque/tartar build up, so if you’re worried about the colour of your dog’s teeth, we would recommend seeing your vet. However, in a healthy, clean mouth, the ‘whiteness’ of teeth is not a worry.

Discover our revolutionary new YuMOVE Dental Care Sticks, and find out how they can help target plaque, freshen breath, promote a healthy oral microbiome, and support good overall dental health. Check out our previous ‘Ask the Vet’ blog posts on itchy skin, senior dogs, and dog weight.

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