Just like people, Bichon Frises require regular dental care to keep their teeth and gums healthy and prevent periodontal disease. Gingivitis, caused by plaque and tartar buildup could lead to more serious health problems if left unattended. Starting dental care when your Bichon Frise is young and checking your pet's mouth for problems will help avoid many dental problems from occurring.
To check your Bichon Frises mouth for signs of dental problems, lift his lip and look at his teeth and gums. If you see reddish-brown discoloration on your pets' teeth near the gum line, that is plaque. As tartar builds up, your dog's gums, which are normally a healthy pink color, start to become inflamed and red. Dogs that receive no dental care for this often end up with infection, gingivitis, bad breath, loss of teeth or jawbone damage. Along with being very unhealthy for your Bichon Frise, it is often very uncomfortable and painful.
Brushing your Bichon Frises teeth regularly helps avoid or slow down dental problems. If you start this when your dog is young it soon becomes a normal part of his daily grooming. To start getting your dog used to having his teeth brushed, use your finger, put a small amount of dog toothpaste on it, and gently rub on your pet's gums and front teeth. There is a large variety of dog toothpaste available on the market today with many flavored like chicken, chocolate, and other foods, which makes some dogs excited to have their teeth brushed. Once your Bichon Frise gets used to your finger switch to a rounded, soft child's toothbrush or dog toothbrush doing their front teeth only. Just like brushing your teeth, brush the top teeth down and the bottom teeth up on your dog. Continue this routine working your way back until you brush all his teeth. Dental health chews also help reduce calculus and plaque accumulation.
You should have your Bichon Frises teeth checked by your veterinarian annually or even sooner if you suspect a problem. Your veterinarian may suggest cleaning your pets' teeth, which is a painless procedure the vet does under general anesthesia or while sedated.
Along with dental care, eye care is important when owning a Bichon Frise. Tearstains are a common problem found in this breed of dog and leave reddish brown marks around the dog's eyes, which can look very unattractive. A little staining is normal but if excessive, have your veterinarian check for any physical causes such as blocked tear ducts, dental problems, and allergies. Once these problems are ruled out or treated, clean your Bichon Fries eyes daily as part of its regular routine. Gently remove any gunk collected in the corners of the eyes daily and keep their hair away from the eyes. Using boric acid and warm water on the stain or trying products available on the market until you find one that works well on your Bichon Frise will soon eliminate the staining problem.