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15 Best Dental Treats For Dogs

Written by Laura
Laura is passionate about all sorts of domesticated pets. They have written dozens of articles across the web.
Published on
Tuesday 15 March 2022
Last updated on
Tuesday 9 May 2023
dental treats best for dogs
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Dogs explore the world with their mouths, so their dental health is super important! Thankfully, there are a lot of ways to keep them clean, and that includes dental treats. To help you out, we’ve come up with a list of the 15 best dental treats for dogs on the market.

So what happens if you ignore your dog’s dental health? Let’s take a look at everything you need to know and answer some frequently asked questions.

Dog Dental Health

Small breeds and elderly dogs are more likely to have dental problems than others, but all dogs are susceptible to dental health issues. So, all owners should keep an eye on their dog’s teeth, the same way that you check on your own.

Every day, the natural bacteria in your dog’s mouth react with what they eat and create a film called plaque over their teeth. Plaque can destroy tooth enamel, turn teeth yellow, cause bad breath, and also harden to become tartar in as little as two days.

Tartar is much harder to get rid of. A build-up of tartar can lead to tooth sensitivity, cavities, and gum disease. Gum disease is irreversible and can cause tooth loss and jaw fractures in advanced stages, which can massively impact a dog’s quality of life, and even spread to other parts of its body.

Severe problems can only be treated or managed at the vets. However, mild bacteria build-up and prevention can be done at home in a number of ways.

dog dental health importance
Keeping your dog’s teeth and gums healthy will help prevent oral pain.

What To Look For In Dental Treats For Dogs

Chew sticks need to be an appropriate size for your dog’s mouth to avoid choking and swallowing large pieces. If you’re looking for a daily treat for your dog, it’s important to look for a product containing natural ingredients and avoid those containing fillers that are unhealthy and hard to digest, especially if your dog has a sensitive stomach.

Ingredients to look out for include calcium to support strong teeth, parsley for fresh breath, and cleaning agents like delmopinol and chlorhexidine. Things to avoid include grains, added sugars, sweeteners, artificial colors, flavors, and preservatives.

Dental chews should always have ridged, hardy or bumpy textures to successfully scrape bacteria off of the teeth. However, you should look out for softer chews for puppies and elderly dogs, as products that are too hard could damage or hurt their mouths.

Other things you might also want to consider include:

  • Trusted brands
  • Products formulated or reccomended by vets
  • Products that have been clinically proven
  • Vet Oral Health Council (VOHC) approved products
  • Products that are made in the USA
  • High ratings and good reviews

15 Best Dental Treats For Dogs

Here are the top 15 best dog dental treats that you can purchase online. Each table has a detailed review so you can easily choose which one is perfect for your fur buddies.

1. Greenies Original Regular Natural Dental Dog Treats

These dental dog treats by Greenies are recommended by the VOHC. They come in several pack sizes and options for different dogs including teenie, petite, regular, and large. They are also available to buy in chicken, mint, and blueberry flavors, plus low-calorie and grain-free options.

The green chews look like a bone at one end and a toothbrush head at the other. They are easy to chew and digest and contain natural, healthy ingredients. They also have a unique texture that scrapes off plaque and tartar down to the gumline and freshens the breath. It’s an Amazon’s Choice product and hardly has any negative reviews.

2. Get Naked Grain Free Puppy Health Dental Chew Sticks

These dental chews by Get Naked are made with puppies in mind. They are suitable for pups over 8 weeks of age and come in packs of 18 chews. They are soft enough for developing teeth, but still hardy enough to keep them clean and soothe teething pains.

The chews also contain DHA Omega-3 and 6 fatty acids for brain development and are fortified with calcium for strong teeth and skeletal growth. They are free from corn, wheat, and soy, as well as being made in the USA. It’s an Amazon’s Choice product and reviews highly recommend it.

3. GREENIES Aging Care Natural Dog Dental Treats

These chicken-flavor treats by Greenies contain the same great ingredients as their original product, but with added nutrients, for senior dogs to support aging joints and immune systems. They’re also 50% softer for aging teeth and gums.

Like the original product, they come in several sizes and pack options. They’re also an Amazon’s Choice product and reviews are overwhelmingly positive.

4. Blue Buffalo Dental Bones

Blue Buffalo’s dental bones contain all-natural, recognizable, tasty ingredients such as blueberries for easy digestion and parsley to freshen the breath. They are free from filler ingredients and the texture helps to reduce plaque and tartar build-up. It is one of the best dog bones that you can give your dog.

They are also made in the USA and come in four sizes for different dogs; mini, small, regular, and large. All of them are available to buy in 12-ounce, 27-ounce, and 36-ounce bags. Several reviews mention the significant difference the treats have made to their dog’s breath.

5. Whimzees Dental Treat

Whimzees dental treats contain less than 10 ingredients that are sourced in Europe. They are clinically proven to be twice as effective as their leading competitors and their simple, all-natural recipe is hypoallergenic, vegetarian, and free from GMOs, grains, artificial additives.

They come in small, medium, large, and extra-large options, and are available to buy in different quantities, including packs of 12, 14, 28, 48, and 56 chews. Each box contains different, unique, and fun-shaped treats, like hedgehogs and crocodiles, as well as standard sticks to help keep stress and boredom at bay.

They are all expertly designed to effectively clean the teeth and gums, as well a freshen breath and entertain your dog. They’re also an Amazon’s Choice product, vet recommended, and VOHC approved. Reviews call them excellent value for money.

6. Oravet Dental Hygiene Chews

These mint-flavor prescription soft treats by Oravet dissolve in the mouth as your dog chews. They contain delmopinol, an anti-plaque agent that forms a protective barrier on the teeth, as well as freshens the breath.

They are available to buy in packs of 14 and 30 for extra small, small, medium, and large dogs. It’s also an Amazon’s Choice product and reviews cannot rate it highly enough.

7. PEDIGREE DENTASTIX Original

Pedigree Dentastix is one of the most popular products of its kind on the market. The deep-ridged “triple action” X-shaped chews are clinically proven to reduce plaque accumulation by as much as 60% and tartar accumulation by as much as 80%.

Pedigree is an internationally loved and trusted brand and this product is recommended by vets worldwide. They come in small, medium, and large sizes, and are available to buy in several different quantities from packs of 7 – 100+. They are beef flavor and reviews are generally positive, but some buyers warn that they aren’t for dogs with super sensitive stomachs.

8. Purina DentaLife Adult Dental Dog Chew Treats

Purina‘s chicken-flavor ridged chews are scientifically proven to cause up to a 57% reduction in plaque and tartar buildup. The innovative design also has 8 ridges and a porous texture to clean hard-to-reach areas of the mouth.

They’re free from artificial colors and flavors and are available to buy in several pack options, ranging from packs of 9 to 40 chews. They also come in different sizes for different dogs, including toy breed, small-medium, and large. Reviews are also very positive.

9. Virbac Cet Veggiedent Chews

These chews by animal health company Virbac come in Z-shapes for easy holding and reaching the back of the mouth. They contain healthy, easy-to-digest ingredients like corn starch and rice flour, and they are free from wheat and animal proteins.

They also come in bags of 15 chews and are available to buy for small, very small, medium, and large dogs. The chews have a natural veg flavor and reviews are highly complimentary of the product.

10. Virbac C.E.T.® Hextra® Premium Oral Hygiene Chews for Dogs

These chews by Virbac come in packs of 90 and are available to buy in four sizes; petite, medium, large, and extra-large. They combine chewy rawhide with chlorhexidine, an anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, and antiseptic that is the most effective chemical of its kind for oral health. Reviews love the product.

This daily dental care is perfect to reduce plaque and tartar through your dog’s chewing action. For it to be more effective, you can give one chew daily to prevent oral problems. These Virbac dental chews are often recommended by Veterinary professionals to maintain healthy and fresh gums and teeth.

11. Ark Naturals Dog Brushless Toothpaste Dental Chew

Ark Naturals‘ chew sticks have outer ridges that scrape bacteria from the teeth and a toothpaste center to prevent future build-up and freshen breath. The all-natural, sweet-tasting chews are naturally flavored with honey, cinnamon, and vanilla, and are also free from filler ingredients.

They come in small-medium and medium-large sizes and are made in the USA. They’re also available to buy in several pack sizes including 40 and 60. Reviews cannot praise the product highly enough and several buyers mention how much it improves bad breath and plaque.

12. Zuke’s Dental Chew Dog Treats

These chews by Zuke’s utilize wholesome, all-natural ingredients, and are free from corn, wheat, soy, and artificial additives. They are available to buy as mini bones for small dogs in packs of 18, regular bones for medium-sized dogs in packs of 8, and large bones for bigger dogs in packs of 6.

They also come in apple and carrot flavors gently clean the teeth and freshen bad breath. It’s an Amazon’s Choice product and reviews say they’re great for dogs with sensitive stomachs.

13. PawStruck Natural Dental Treats for Dogs

These chicken-flavor dental chews by PawStruck come in packs of 15 and are available to buy in small for dogs under 30 lbs, and large for dogs over 30 lbs. They contain less than ten ingredients that are natural, recognizable, easy to digest, and high-quality.

They contain calcium for strong, healthy teeth and cumin and parsley for fresh breath. The unique shape and texture of the treats scrape off plaque and tartar, as well as being fun to chew.

They’re also packed with aromatic herbs to entice pups and are free from corn, wheat, and artificial ingredients. PawStruck is a small, family business that makes all of its products in the USA and several reviews call the treats their dog’s favorites.

14. Minties VetIQ Dog Dental Bone Treats

VetIQ’s chicken-flavor bone-shaped green chews have a hardy, bumpy texture to scrape off plaque and tartar. They contain a small list of recognizable ingredients including alfalfa, parsley, dill, fennel, and peppermint to help freshen the breath. They are also free from wheat, gluten, soy, corn, artificial additives, and animal by-products.

The treats come in two size options; tiny-small and medium-large, and are available to buy in packs of 8, 16, 20, and 40. They are also vet-recommended and made in the USA. It’s an Amazon’s Choice product and reviews love it, with several buyers mentioning the huge difference they’ve noticed in their dog’s bad breath.

15. Milk-Bone Fresh Breath Brushing Chews Daily Dental Dog Treats

These treats by Milk-Bone come in several buying options ranging from packs of 9 to 68 chews. They’re also chicken flavor and available to buy in mini size, small-medium size, and large size for different dogs.

The patented bone design has bumps on either end and ridges all the way around it to thoroughly clean the teeth and gums. They are also fortified with calcium and approved by the VOHC. It’s an Amazon’s Choice product and reviews can’t recommend it highly enough.

right age to give dental treats
Dental Chews help control tartar, plaque buildup, and promote good dental health.

How To Keep Your Dog’s Mouth Clean

We, humans, prevent bacteria build-up in our own mouths by brushing our teeth every day and visiting the dentist once or twice a year. For dogs, it can be a little more complicated. So, here are some top tips for keeping your dog’s mouth clean!

Diet

The easiest way to prevent dental problems is a clean, healthy diet. Nutritiously complete and balanced commercial foods and natural, high-quality protein sources, with fruits and vegetables that are low in sugar and acidity, are the first line of defense against poor oral health.

There are also kibbles with special shapes, textures, and coatings that clean the teeth and prevent bacterial build-up.

Tooth Brushes & Toothpaste

You could also try brushing your dog’s teeth. Pet toothbrushes have soft bristles, long handles, and angular heads that fit the shape of the canine mouth. You can also get finger brushes for pets that don’t like regular ones that fit like a cap over the finger.

Brushing daily, or even a few times a week is a great way to make sure every inch of your dog’s mouth is clean. You should also always use dog toothpaste, as human toothpaste often contains xylitol which is poisonous to dogs. Alternatively, you could make your own with baking soda and organic coconut oil in equal parts.

Food & Water Additives

Not all dogs like brushing their teeth. Two incredibly convenient alternatives are food and water additives that freshen the breath, whiten the teeth and reduce plaque build-up – with no brushing required, simply by mixing the product into your dog’s daily meals or water bowl.

Chew Toys

Another easy way to clean your dog’s teeth at home is by providing chew toys. The act of chewing itself stimulates saliva production which rinses away food and surface bacteria, but hardy chew toys can actually scrape off plaque as they chew. All while having fun!

There are also chew toys with special designs that clean the teeth and work especially well when covered in a runny treat such as peanut butter, or even doggie toothpaste.

Dental Treats

Commercial dental treats have deep ridges to scrape plaque and tartar off of the teeth, with some proven to reduce bacterial build-up by 80%. They also contain ingredients that support strong teeth and freshen breath.

dental treats effectivity
Dental treats should be given in accordance with the directions on product packaging or your vet’s instructions.

Natural & Homemade treats

Hardy animal chews such as buffalo horns or caribou antlers work well as dental treats, too. Plus, they are all-natural, super nutritious, and long-lasting. However, they’re not great for puppies, older dogs, and dogs with poor dental health, as they are a bit too hardy. For these dogs, you can try putting a carrot in the freezer overnight! Same effect, only with less risk.

Vet Check-Ups

Finally, it’s essential to attend annual veterinary check-ups so that your vet can monitor all aspects of your dog’s health, including their teeth. It’s also a good opportunity for you to ask any questions that you may have and get advice from your vet.

Dog Dental Treats: FAQ

We gathered the top frequently asked questions about the top dental treats for dogs, below are the best answers to your inquiries.

Can dental treats cause stomach upsets?

Dogs can gain weight and get stomach upsets from eating dental treats if they are of low quality or if your dog has allergies or sensitivities. Always check the ingredient list and if your dog has any allergies or a sensitive stomach, avoid anything with allergens, rawhide, or filler ingredients such as grains, sugars, sweeteners, additives, and preservatives.

What are the best ways to prevent gum disease in dogs?

A healthy diet and good oral hygiene are the best ways to prevent gum disease in dogs. This means eating a high-quality, nutritious diet, using dental treats, and providing proper chew toys. For extra help, try brushing your dog’s teeth or using a food or water additive.

What are the signs of gum disease in dogs?

The symptoms of gum disease in dogs include inflamed or bleeding gums, pawing at the mouth, drooling, difficulty eating, loss of appetite and weight, and loose or missing teeth. The severity of the symptoms will depend on the stage of the disease.

There are four stages; the first is reversible and purely inflammatory. At stage two, 25% or less of a tooth or teeth’s attachment to the supporting structures are lost, at stage three, it’s 25-50%, and at stage four it’s over 50%. All of the stages past stage one are irreversible but manageable.

How is gum disease treated in dogs?

Treatment for gum disease depends on the stage of the disease. At stage one, vets will advise owners on how to take better daily care of their dog’s teeth. Stage two involves a deep clean, polishing of the teeth, a full examination, and x-rays under anesthetic performed by a vet can help to identify problem areas and prevent further damage. At stage three, advanced restorative procedures must be done, and at stage four teeth must be removed.

Are dental dog treats effective?

Yes. Dental treats are proven to be effective when it comes to reducing oral bacteria in dogs by 60-70%. It can lessen plaque build-up, cavities, and other gum diseases. Besides dog treats, you can also brush your pet’s teeth using vet-approved toothpaste 2-3 times a week.

Those are our top 15 best dental treats for dogs. If your dog has bad breath or could do with some teeth whitening, try out one of our recommendations! If you’re concerned about the condition of your dog’s dental health, speak to your vet for advice.

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