Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Brush With Fang

There are two things about Belle that challenge me the most; her propensity to treat Ole the Cat as her favorite chew toy and the daily struggle to brush Belle’s teeth. We’ve come a long way with the first problem, but the second is still a daily struggle.

I’ve tried rubber fingers, gauze, various types of toothbrushes and pastes and she’s outwitted me at every turn. Her usual method of ending the process? Clamping her jaw on whatever object I’m using at the time. The only tool I need to teach her “hold” is a toothbrush.

I’m not ready to throw in the towel yet, however. Believe it or not, there is loads of advice on this topic on the internet. (How did I get through school without the internet?) A google of “dog teeth brushing” brought up 852,000 hits including this helpful link http://www.peteducation.com/article.cfm?cls=2&cat=1653&articleid=384 from Pet Education.Com.

The article suggests using bouillon to start with, letting the dog lick the broth off of my fingers. I haven’t tried that method yet, although Belle did eat a few wrapped bouillon cubes when I reorganized my kitchen cupboard recently. It didn’t clean her teeth exactly, but it did get my kitchen floor spotless after she vomited the entire contents of her breakfast (including the foil wrappings) over the entire length of the kitchen.

Come to think of it, Ole the Cat is soft and fuzzy, and does smell a little like chicken bouillon – maybe Belle’s just trying to brush her own teeth by chewing on Ole.

God help us both.

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