How To Brush Your Poodle’s Teeth

How To Brush Your Poodle’s Teeth

Brushing your Poodle’s teeth on a daily basis will help prevent dental disease, Gingivitis and Periodontitis. Gingivitis is reversible. Periodontal disease is irreversible and can lead to damage of the heart, liver and kidneys.

Get in the habit of checking your poodle’s mouth and brushing her teeth every day. Choose a time that will be convenient and become a part of your poodle’s daily routine.

When brushing your poodle’s teeth, use a soft-bristled pet toothbrush and toothpaste made for dogs. Human toothpaste is not made to be swallowed and can cause stomach upset. Toothpastes made for dogs come in different flavors and are more appealing to your dog. Canine toothpaste is enzymatic so it works when it touches the teeth -the brushing action isn’t as important as it is with humans.

This video explains why dental care is so important and gives a good demonstration of how to brush a dogs teeth.

When you first introduce your poodle to having her teeth brushed, start by offering a taste of the toothpaste on your finger. The next time, offer a taste and then run your finger along the gum line of the upper teeth. Repeat the process with the tooth brush.

If your poodle won’t let you brush all her teeth, concentrate on the outside of the back upper teeth. This is the most important area in preventing periodontal disease.

At some point, your poodle will need a professional cleaning performed by a veterinarian. A Toy Poodle can require a veterinary dental twice a year and a Standard Poodle once a year.

Anal Gland Care
by SUE VICKERS on JANUARY 10, 2010
Dogs have two anal glands. These sac-like structures are located just under the skin on each side of the rectum. Normally, the glands secrete a watery, brownish fluid that empties into the rectum during defecation. Occasionally, the fluid is not expelled completely and the sacs become clogged. The pressure causes irritation, which the dog tries to relieve by scooting across the floor on his hindquarters, or by constantly licking and biting at the base of the tail.

Though the signs can vary from dog to dog, common signs of impacted anal glands are:

scooting on the rear end
licking the area around the anal glands
reluctance in defecating, resembling constipation
discomfort when the area is touched
Impaction seems to be more common in Toy Poodles and other small breeds, than larger dogs. A regular check of the anal glands and expressing them if full, should be a part of the poodles grooming routine.

When the anal glands become clogged, they must be emptied by squeezing them to discharge the fluid inside. Expressing the anal glands is not a pleasant job, but it must be done to prevent further infection and serious medical problems.

How To Empty The Anal Glands

The best time to take care of the anal glands is right before you bathe your poodle.

If you are not going to bathe your Poodle and there is a pungent odor after you expressed the glands, moisten a cloth with warm water and a little shampoo, and then clean and rinse the skin and hair; otherwise the odor will remain.

Stand your Poodle on a firm surface, and hold up the tail with one hand. The anal glands are located at the 5 o’clock and 7 o’clock position, you will feel the glands as small firm nodules.
Cover the anus with a paper towel or wipe, as the accumulation may spurt out when the glands are emptied. Hold the wipe in your free hand and place it over the anal opening.
Place your thumb on one side of the anus and your index finger on the other, underneath and slightly behind the glands, then squeeze in an upward and outward motion.
The anal gland secretion can be any color from yellow to brown, ranging from watery to paste like, with a foul odor. The presence of pus or blood indicates that an infection is present. Infected anal glands require antibiotic treatment from your veterinarian.

If you can feel an accumulation and cannot expel it, you should call your veterinarian; because the glands can become abscessed and rupture.

Clipping Your Poodle’s Nails
by SUE VICKERS on JANUARY 14, 2010
A professional groomer will trim your poodle’s nails during the grooming session, but because these visits occur every 6 weeks or so, you’ll need to clip your poodle’s nails at home. How often your Poodle needs her nails trimmed varies with the dog. It is best to keep the nails clipped so they do not touch the ground when your poodle is standing.

With my dogs, Cleo and Piper’s toenails grow fast and need their nails clipped weekly. Nyka needs her nails trimmed once every two weeks.

It is important to keep your poodle’s nails short. Over grown nails that touch the ground, put pressure on the base of the nail and can be painful. In an aging dog, long nails can distort the paw and intensify the pain of arthritis. Walking may become so difficult, the dog appears lame.

Long nails can also get caught on things and be torn off, which is extremely painful for the dog and often requires veterinary attention.

To clip your dogs nails at home you will need:

Nail Clippers – There are different types and sizes of nail clippers available. Guillotine style clippers and scissor style clippers are the two most popular models. Small or medium-size clippers work well for Toy and Miniature Poodles, large or heavy-duty are better suited for Standard Poodles.
Styptic Powder – It is a good idea to have styptic powder, in case you clip too close and the nail bleeds.
Nail File or Emery Board – To smooth down rough edges. An electric pet nail grinder is another option.
About The Nail Quick

In the center of each toenail is the blood and nerve supply for the nail, called the quick. With white nails you can see the pink color of the quick. For dark nails you can shine a flash light behind the nail to locate the quick. Trim the nail as close to quick as possible without cutting into it because it will bleed and cause pain for your poodle.

The best way to avoid cutting into the quick is to trim the nails often. As the outside of the nail grows, the quick grows along with it. When the nails are trimmed frequently, the quick tends to recede. The more often you trim the nails, the farther back the quick recedes.

How To Cut Your Poodle’s Nails

Hold the paw firmly in one hand. Place your thumb on top of the foot and fingers underneath to spread the toes.
With your other hand, clip the nails, one at a time. If you are unsure, snip off a little at a time. If you do cut into the quick and bleeding occurs, apply a dab of styptic powder to the nail with gentle pressure until the bleeding stops.
Remove any sharp edges with a few swipes of a nail file or emery board.
Another options for keeping your poodle’s nails short is to use an electric nail grinder, which uses a rotating sandpaper bit. The video below is a demonstration of the Dremel Pet Grinder.

Whatever method you use, nail trims need to be part of your weekly grooming routine to keep your poodle’s feet in good shape. Nail clipping may be one of your poodle’s least favorite aspects of grooming, but it’s necessary. When the nails are neglected, the quick grows too long and it is very difficult to shorten the nails without severing the quicks.