Here at K9 Gentle Dental, we always tell you to brush your dog’s teeth every day! However, as pet parents ourselves, we also understand that this is much easier said than done…especially if you have a particularly sensitive animal, or a rescue with an unknown past! We often get asked by pet parents, ‘How do I keep my dog or cat’s teeth clean at home–besides brushing?’
When it comes to dental hygiene there really is no substitute for daily teeth brushing with coconut oil. However, some dogs need some extra help to keep their teeth sparkly white, and some people don’t have the time to brush their wiggly dog’s teeth every day. Unfortunately we can’t rely on our pups to brush their own teeth!
Contrary to popular belief, just being on a kibble diet is not enough to keep your pet’s teeth clean. Even though the kibble is hard and sometimes large (as seen in many commercial dental diet formulations), any plaque or tartar being scraped away is usually from the very tips of the teeth meaning that the gumline is still plagued by plaque! (1) Plaque and tartar buildup along the gum line is what causes gums to become irritated and red, resulting in gingivitis. (2)
Fortunately there are plenty of ways you can help your pet’s teeth stay clean: dental chews and a good diet are a wonderful place to start, but there are also plenty of products on the market that you can add to your pet’s daily meals that help their body repel tartar and plaque. The product we will be talking about today is ProDen Plaqueoff.
Proden is a well-established dental company from Sweden that have been in operation for more than 15 years helping the dental health of pets and their people alike. They started out with a chance discovery when one of their regular patients, who had suffered chronic tartar buildup and could do nothing but go to all too frequent cleaning, came in to get his teeth cleaned one day and had suddenly been ‘cured’, his tartar build-up being no more than the average person!(3&4) This discovery was linked to the fact that he had started eating a food that had naturally high amounts of kelp in the form of Ascophyllum nodosum. Proden went through a gamut of testing to determine that yes–Ascophyllum nodosum does make an impact on tartar build-up! They took this discovery and ran with it, and now they are selling products across all continents in capsule form for people and in powder form for pets to help combat the tough affliction of dirty teeth. Plaqueoff Powder, available in dog and cat formulas, is readily available through commercial sources in Canada.
What makes PlaqueOff
Plaqueoff is made 100% from a North Atlantic algae called Ascophyllum nodosum which has been proven to help reduce the deterioration of a dog’s oral health and is a notable source of minerals that are beneficial for the body: Iodine and Phosphate are known to affect the deposit rate of plaque on the teeth; Sulphur in the form of fucoidan prevents bacteria from sticking to the dental enamel, and zinc prevents the buildup of tartar in the first place!(5) Overall this means that the Ascophyllum nodosum is absorbed by the bloodstream and released into the saliva, helping soften tartar and plaque for easy removal by brushing, chewing, or scaling, and also helps prevent new deposits from forming. At the end of the day with brushing, we can help contribute to an overall cleaner mouth.
How Do I Use Plaqueoff?
Using Plaqueoff is easy–the powder supplement contains a small scoop with dosage instructions for the size of your cat or dog: usually no more than one or two tiny little scoops! The powder is added to your pet’s food once a day and can be mixed in with any kind of diet-raw, kibble, wet, whatever you feed can benefit from the addition of this kelp powder.
A daily dose of Plaqueoff is such a small amount that most pets won’t even notice the addition of it to their food! On the off chance that they do, and are turned off by it, adding a small amount of warm water to the meal or adding a small incentive like wet food or low-sodium chicken or beef broth usually does the trick. The Plaqueoff formula for cats includes 10% brewer’s yeast, a common addition to many cat supplements as the flavor tends to be very palatable for even the most finicky of felines. (6)
It Doesn’t Work Alone!
As wonderful as Plaqueoff proves to be, it is not a substitute for home dental maintenance. Most pets will still require at least a yearly cleaning which includes scaling the hardened tartar off the teeth, and frequent (daily-weekly) tooth brushing done at home. They should also be receiving chews that will help engage the muscles of their jaw and stimulate their gums–all of these together will steer your pet in the direction of a healthier mouth!
Results of Plaqueoff are typically seen within 3-6 weeks with regular brushing and gum stimulation.
Disclaimer: as Ascophyllum nodosum kelp is naturally high in Iodine, the Plaqueoff product is not recommended for pets that have thyroid issues, nor for pregnant or lactating animals. No other side effects (digestion, elimination, overall health) have been noted or observed.
Find Proden Plaqueoff at your local independent pet retailer!