Bad Breath in Pets: Natural Remedies

Last Modified on Sep 23, 2014

What greater joy exists than a pet that is so happy to see you that they bowl you over licking you to death?  Unfortunately the experience becomes somewhat less joyous when the pet is stricken with a horrible case of halitosis or bad breath, as it is more commonly known.  A dog or cat with bad breath can cause any pet owner to turn the other way in an attempt to avoid those loving licks.  And even though we all love to wake up to a nice, slobbery, facial wash, sometimes that breath is just too much to take first thing in the morning.Dog

There may be a specific reason for the bad breath, and again there may not be.  Particular issues like periodontal disease can often cause halitosis.  Look for symptoms such as swollen or tender gums, plaque build up and yellow or brownish stains on the teeth.  Though we can give you some tips on how to manage your pet's bad breath, issues such as the ones mentioned should not be ignored.

To suppress that stinky breath try giving your pet Garlic and Fenugreek Tablets that you can pick up at an herbal or health food store.  The tablets contain 16mg of powdered fenugreek and .22 mg of essential garlic oil.  A daily maintenance plan of approximately 1 tablet per 10 kg animal (to a maximum of 4 tablets daily for giant breeds) should help to combat the problem.

A bean-like plant, fenugreek comes from its native India and Southern Europe and is made up essentially of the small seeds from within the pod of the plant. 

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User Reviews



Baking Soda   1  0   

Posted by Piper (Toronto) on 01/29/2013

[YEA]  For cat bad breath. I took my 14 year old cat in to vet - he was doing poorly. Losing weight, poor appetite, really bad breath. Did blood tests - but none of the usual ailments present. The vet told me that with bad teeth - they have bacteria in their mouth that is picked up by the blood and carried around their body.

As nothing conclusive came up in bloodwork, I decided to work on his teeth. I started to brush his teeth daily with a small amount of baking soda. I put a little bit on a child's toothbrush and just brush gently but firmly.

He doesn't particularily like it. He also doesn't rush to get the taste out of his mouth either. I think the time that the baking soda is in his mouth it is killing bacteria.

After doing this for a couple of days, his appetite returned. He seemed to have more energy and his fur seems nicer. His breath isn't terrible.

I should note I might have tried something added to his water, but he will only drink out of the tap.

Diet   1  0   

Posted by Esprit64 (North Yarmouth, Maine) on 02/21/2011

I have owned dogs and cats for years and the way I keep them well (having fresh breath, non-smelly stools and clean teeth--indicators of good health) is to feed them a no-grain diet, both wet and dry, supplemented by raw meats, occasional fresh fruits/veggies. I am not a nutritionist, so I always purchase a good quality manufactured pet food as the basic food source (not any of the popular brands found in supermarkets, even those touted as healthy or natural or "top of the line" --rather, purchase from select pet stores--likely not any of the box pet stores--which stock foods having only healthy ingredients.

My pets "brush" their teeth by eating raw, not cooked, beef/chicken/rabbit/etc., meats on the bone. Chewing raw--not cooked--bones is nature's natural toothbrush.

As a result of good eating and food habits, your pet's breath should be fresh, they should pass no gas, and their stools will not be horrendous smelling.

Posted by Erin
Seattle, Wa
05/14/2011
[YEA]   My pomeranian has oxalic bladder stones, and we've already been through one uncomfortable doggie up until one very expensive surgery. I heard about the raw dog diet and started him on it once signs of the oxalic stones were back. We had him on a holistic dog food diet and they still came back, albeit a year under schedule (go holistic food! ). However, I have had him on a raw dog food diet for two weeks now and now shows no signs of the oxalic bladder stones that were there previously. His breath is almost scentless, he has more energy, and less eye discharge. Apparently, fleas do not like raw dieted dogs, either, which will be a blessing since he is severely allergic to fleas as well, which I am also treating this year with garlic and brewers yeast pills and so far he has not needed expensive flea meds... We'll see.... I will give a progress update in a month or two. Meanwhile, anyone who has a dog with medical problems or just seeks to maintain optimal health should add the book "raw dog food" to their arsenal of pet care literature. Out of all the other things I have tried, this diet has warranted the quickest and most profound change in our dog's health.
Posted by Rilo B.
Crescent City, Ca
05/29/2011
Just a tsp. A day of coconut oil , and not only will your dogs breath improve , but also cures "hot spots", their coat becomes shiny and skin problems vitually disappear!!! Dogs that have a "wet dog smell" to them ( labradors especially) coconut oil @ just tsp. a day will rid your dog of odors. You and your dog will LOVE IT!!! My dogs come running when they hear me opening the coconut oil jar. I've read articles about VCO (virgin coconut oil ) help w/tumors also. I loaned the magazine out (whole dog journal) that had the article in it, and now cannot locate it in whole dog journal archives, but it was fantastic account of all the benefits VCO provides for dogs. It won't hurt them...

So before you spend $$ on vet for skin , breath or coat problems, begin giving them a tsp. daily. See the improvement in just few weeks!!! I have 6 small dogs -4 love it, 2 can take it or leave it... Can be melted on poured over food... But 4 of them eat right off spoon. Give it a try -your dog will love you ~ even more... Rilo B.

Posted by Dreamystr1
San Diego, Ca
02/22/2012
Organic virgin Coconut oil is great for dogs and humans. My Schnauzer Mix loves it. It will help to remove toxins in the mouth and remove fat deposits in blood and in general its great to eat. I just give my dog loves it straight off the spoon. It helps with cracked skin since it's a great moisturizer, I just spread some on their paws. Also for grooming, I spread very little in his coat to help with this curls after grooming. (simply rub in your palms and spread accross their hair. :D


Helps the coat and skin.

Posted by Heather
Meadville, Usa
04/21/2012
Onions and garlic in all forms -- powdered, raw, cooked, or dehydrated -- can destroy a dog's red blood cells, leading to anemia. That can happen even with the onion powder found in some baby food. An occasional small dose is probably OK. But just eating a large quantity once or eating smaller amounts regularly can cause poisoning. Symptoms of anemia include weakness, vomiting, little interest in food, dullness, and breathlessness.

Garlic   0  1   

Posted by Nathalie (Laval, Quebec) on 05/18/2011

[NAY]  This site suggest giving your dog garlic for your dogs breath. DO NOT.. Garlic and onions are unhealthy to your dogs blood count!!!!!!

BAD ADVICE!

Posted by Mel
Australia
09/22/2014
Small amounts of garlic are appropriate, it is only in large amounts it is dangerous. Small amounts are actually beneficial.

Posted by R.... (Anaheim, California, USA) on 12/27/2008

[WARNING!]  Warning to those who would take the advise of using garlic for their cats' bad breath. I surfed the net for toxic plants and food for cats. At least three websites posted the same thing: garlic, onion, chocolate, raisins, among other very common food ingredient... were said to be poisonous to cats - they may not be for dogs, but accordingly, garlic for instance kills red blood cells in cats if I remember right... and since cats are different in that they have very slow metabolism, the bad effects would not quickly manifest. ...good for humans but never for cats!!!

Grapefruit Seed Extract, Water, Caramel Extract   1  0   

Posted by Diane (Saratoga Springs, New york) on 02/24/2009

What is carmal extract? Do you mean caramel?

EC: Must be -- no such thing as carmal extract!

Posted by Diane
Saratoga Springs, N.Y.
02/27/2009
Thank you EC.
Posted by Diamond
Merrimac, Ma.
02/18/2011
35 Posts
Alan; the artificial sugar used in sugar free gum has caused millions cancer along with many other severe ailments....

Posted by Alan on 07/06/2006

[YEA]  We use: Grapefruit seed Extract. H20, carmal extract, xylotol for sweetness -- found in sugar free gums. A solution of 20 drops Grapefruit Seed Extract with 10oz. H20 and carmel extract for taste has cured incoming dogs to the pet rescue of bad breath and tarter build up. This took about 2 days of having it sprayed into the mouth for bad breath and a week to notice loss of tarter. Daily maintenace of 4 drops in water also showed a reduction in weight in our heavier dogs. Give chew toys or carrots to dogs during this time to assist with the cleaning process. GSE is an excellent anti bacterial element and has many uses for people and pets. Great for raising the pets PH level as well.

Posted by Candice
Victorville, CA
[WARNING!]   Hello. I was reading a remedy for Halitosis, from: Alan and he writes, "We use: Grapefruit seed Extract. H20, carmal extract, xylotol for sweetness -- found in sugar free gums. A solution of 20 drops Grapefruit Seed Extract with 10oz. H20 and carmal extract for taste has cured incoming dogs to the pet rescue of bad breath and tarter build up." I was worried about the Xylotol that is used for a sweetener, in his recipe, because I read an article stating that Xylitol caused serious side effects in Dogs including death. I believe the article was from Pedigree.com, but I am not sure. I just thought that this would be useful information. Thanks!
Posted by Tamara
Baton Rouge
02/15/2007
[WARNING!]   Do NOT use products with Xylotol in them for your pets. It's toxic in very small amounts.
Posted by Claire
Spring, Texas
02/21/2009
[WARNING!]   I was recently at the vet's office, for my dog's minute breath problem. She told me to NEVER give my dog anything with XYLITOL in it, as it is EXTREMELY harmful to them, and yes can even cause death. I am not sure it's effects with Cat's but please, NEVER GIVE ANYTHING WITH XYLITOL IN IT to your dog!!! I would also reccommend seeing your veterinarian before giving ANYTHING to your pet. They may be more expensive than buying something over the counter, but the effects can be worth a precious life! Please be cautious.
Posted by Nancy
Springfield, VA
03/23/2009
[WARNING!]   PLEASE..PLEASE..PLEASE...make sure your dog doesn't get a hold of anything that has XYLITOL. It can be deadly for dogs. My daughter's dog (a year old pomchi) got a hold of her purse and ate couple of pieces of sugar free gum (with xylitol) last year and he almost died. He was taken to an emergency room to get his stomack pumped which cost her $1000 in vet bills...not to mention the anxiety and saddness it caused my daughter.

Hydrogen Peroxide   1  0   

Posted by Dorothy (Valley Glen, California) on 03/24/2008

[YEA]  Our eight-year-old Jack Russell Terrier had very bad breath and ugly black-stain teeth for most of her life. We tried everything, chopping parsley and adding it to her food, brushing her teeth with pet toothpaste, Greenies which gave her hemorrhoids, tried getting the Vet to clean her teeth but he never did, and everything we tried, failed. That is until I tried a drop of hydrogen peroxide. Now I've gradually worked up to adding an eye-dropper full (5-8 drops) to her water bowls daily, and her breath and teeth have improved much to our amazement. Her black teeth are now pure white, her breath is fresh and she seems to have a lot of new energy. Now I'm ready to give it a try myself for my arthritis.

Posted by Maureen
Charlotte, NC
07/05/2008
Is the hydrogen peroxide you give to your pets food grade? I would like to try it for my cat's bad breath.
Posted by Mary
Tampa, Florida
09/04/2008
Using Hydrogen Peroxide for dog breath: I have 9 yr old yorkie terrier with bad breath.... so can we use the regular HP you get at the drug store...the one we use to wipe our cuts to clean the germs...we can use this one on the dogs? So just put it in the dog water...a drop to how many cups of water? I don't want to over dose the poor little guy. please email me at maitaz@yahoo.com Thanks Mary
Posted by Minou
Ottawa, Canada
09/14/2008
In response to Mary from Tampa, Florida:

09/04/2008: Mary from Tampa, Florida replies: "Using Hydrogen Peroxide for dog breath: I have 9 yr old yorkie terrier with bad breath.... so can we use the regular HP you get at the drug store...the one we use to wipe our cuts to clean the germs...we can use this one on the dogs? So just put it in the dog water...a drop to how many cups of water? I don't want to over dose the poor little guy. please email me at maitaz@yahoo.com Thanks Mary"

Get a food grade H2O2 which is 30%, and dilute it to 3% with water. Start with one drop in his water bowl, and increase the dosage gradually. All the products for teeth whittening have hydrogen peroxide at certain concentration.

Posted by Emily
Santa Rosa, CA
12/10/2008
Regarding Food Grade Hydrogen Peroxide for bad breath in dogs. I've checked my local health food market and I've been unable to find something called Food Grade Hydrogen Peroxide. Can someone help me so I know what to look for? I'd love something to cure bad breath in by two 100 pound lab mix dogs. Thank you

EC: http://www.earthclinic.com/remedies/hydrogen_peroxide_where_to_buy2.html#USA

Posted by Gabrielle
Brighton, Ontario, Canada
05/09/2010
6 Posts
Give your dog some real food, the same as what you eat, and your dog will have sweet breath. give him real bones to eat - his teeth will become white again.
Posted by Takidomama29
Minnetrista, Mn
08/30/2010
Ok, so I went into my bathroom and pulled out our hydrogen peroxide and looked at the active ingredients. Now someone wrote that they should get food grade HP that's at 30%. Well when I'm looking at the drug facts on the bottle, it says hydrogen peroxide is the only active ingredient, and that it's stabilized 3%. Does that mean that this is the kind that's ok to mix into my dog's water to help with his horrible breath and tartar build up?
Posted by Catnat
Greenville, Texas
01/22/2011
It is the stabilizers that make the H2O2 impure, just like the extra junk they put in your and your pet's processed foods that cause any number of diseases. The reason it's called "food grade" peroxide is because it's acceptable for consumption. It's much more powerful than the grocery store peroxide so it MUST be diluted. It can be used therapeutically for animals & humans. Extra peroxide should be kept in the refrigerator or freezer to extend shelf life. There are multiple sources for it online.
Posted by Maryannw
Brick, Nj / Usa
04/12/2011
8 Posts
[SIDE EFFECTS]   I tried putting hydrogen peroxide in my dog's water bowl for her very foul breath - guessing gums/tooth decay, but she has been very sick too. Anyway, I tried it and she threw up about 4 minutes later. Then I read how to make a dog throw up is to give them hydrogen peroxide? so I am confused and won't be using that anymore. Also- do NOT use it Full Strength on the gums!! Will burn!!
Posted by Haley
Mckinney, Tx
12/08/2011
Yes, Hydrogen Peroxide is used to induce vomiting, when my dogs were puppies, they got into chocolate. We called the vet, and had to give them each 1 Tbsp of Hydrogen Peroxide, which they immediately vomited more food than I have ever seen! But I don't think if you use a minute amount mixed with water would have the same effect, unless your dog has digestive problems.

Remedies Needed   0  0   

Posted by Evie (Torrance, Ca) on 11/13/2009

My 12 year old cat has really bad breath and her teeth have gotten bad with age. I noticed that she is drooling lately. She was a ferrel cat and is still skittish. I tried to look in her mouth to see what was going on but she would not let me. She hates the vet and has major anxiety when I try to put her in her carrying case. Do you have any recommendations to help her?

Posted by Diamond
Merrimac, Ma.
02/18/2011
35 Posts
If a cat has lived that long God bless her and God bless you. If it were my cat I would just let her rest out the remainder of her years with you in peace, rather than bumping her around to a vet. Try doing home remedies, but not to get carried away. Some of us write what we feel works is accurate for our animals, but it does not always apply to all animals. Your cat is aging gracefully let her do just that. I don't find vets. to be the very best advocate in helping any animal along with experimental/conventional meds. I just lost a beautiful cat name zoie, the vet. gave her a antihistamine which made her heart beat faster, it stopped her from eating & drinking & much more soon after her heart gave out & she died.

So if your kitty wants to live in peace let her, why stir it up?as the old saying goes leave well enough alone, and leave it up to God.

Posted by Karen
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
02/20/2012
"So if your kitty wants to live in peace let her, why stir it up? As the old saying goes leave well enough alone, and leave it up to God."

Diamond from Merrimac, Ma., we will do the same for you when you get sick.

Posted by Ophelia
Vancouver, Bc, Canada
05/21/2012
I've been reading and enjoying this site for years and have never felt compelled to reply to a thread until now. I am shocked at Diamond and Karen's reply to Evies concern about her cat. First of all 12 years is NOT OLD FOR A CAT and a cat of this age should never be left to just live out their years in peace if they have a health concern. That is both negligent and cruel. I have two sibling cats who are 20 years old this year, and in excellent health. This may surprise some, but it should not as the oldest recorded living cat was 34 years old. The oldest recorded living human was 118, so if you do the math then a 20 year old cat would be about 69 (about 3.5 cat years to 1 human year) and a 12 year old cat would be about 42 and not geriatric by any means! The best advice I can give (and I also have a healthy happy 17 year old cat) is to feed your animals a healthy raw food diet, supplement with raw meaty bones like chicken necks, give them daily coq10 (about 15 to 30 mgs/day) when they reach 15 years or so, and try to find a vet that does house calls! There is also plenty of info on the internet and in books now regarding natural and homeopathic remedies for cats.

Evie, if your cat is still alive and well, try the food grade peroxide in water for your cat (as mentioned in the thread above), and try switching to a natural raw diet (and if possible try to add some green tripe). Good luck and by all means continue giving her the best treatment possible - she could potentially have many good, happy and loving years left in her yet!

Posted by Bridget (Hull, UK) on 03/23/2009

Hi I have just found his website and would really like some advice from all you guys - I have a 14 1/2 year old jack russell cross who was originally a rescue dog. She used to have the sweetest breath but now it is simply awful due to her bad teeth. she has never been fed on sweet things by us in the last 10 years or so since we had her - but now she has teeth covered with plaque and it is effecting her gums. The vet won't do anything about it manually because of her age and she has a heart murmour. She is very fit and exercised well daily and is very perky but I know her teeth bother her because she does this displacement thing of licking her front legs when they hurt and sometimes she drops the ball she's carry during a game of ball and I can see that her mouth is paining her. Any ideas at all? I wondered about anything homeopathic - or would apple cider vinegar help do you think?

EC: You may find some helpful remedies on this page: http://www.earthclinic.com/pets/mouth-and-teeth-issues.html

Posted by Bill
Memphis, Tn
12/03/2009
Bridget, you might want to try giving your dog a raw chicken neck daily. I had a malamute whose teeth got covered with plaque, I fed him raw turkey necks and that just scaled the plaque right off. Raw bones won't splinter.
Posted by (ingrid
Brighton, Ontario, Canada
05/09/2010
6 Posts
Take liquid Bee Propolis and put it on your dogs gums with a Q-tip the gums will heal in 2-3 days also puts some drops in their food. Bee Propolis is anti-septic anti-fungal, anti-microbial anti-viral anti-bacterial.

Any kind of injuries you can put Bee Propolis on and it will heal in a matter of days( same for people )

Hydrogen peroxide food grade will kill cancer cells in Animals and People

Toothpaste for Kids   2  0   

Posted by Crystal (Beaverton, Oregon) on 11/23/2008

[YEA]  Hello all I have had many dog's. I even had a litter if 6 puppies. The best thing that I found is brushing my dog's teeth with childrens toothpaste with my kids old tooth brushes. The dog's love the taste and I love the smell!!! Must brush once a week if not more. The vet say's they have perfect condition teeth too. Bad breath is just a tad of kids tooth paste away you really don't need very much.

EC: WARNING! Some of the ingredients in kids' toothpastes may be toxic for dogs (i.e., xylitol ), so one would need to research the brand very carefully before using!

Posted by Yvonne
Castlegar, B.c. Canada
06/20/2011
[YEA]   Try apple cider vinegar. You can put it in their water or I put it in their food. My shitzu cross gets a teaspoon and my cocker cross gets a tablespoon. It also repells fleas and gives them a nice coat. Yvonne Canada







 



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