What is Canine Periodontal Disease?

Smelly dog breath isn’t normal. In fact, it actually can be a sign your dog has Canine Periodontal Disease.

But you are not alone! According to a Swedish study carried out with over 600,000 dog owners in 2017, it was found that 80% of dogs were showing early signs of canine Periodontal disease by the age of three.

Canine Periodontal Disease


February is dental awareness month for dogs. Dental health plays an important role in your dog’s overall health and wellbeing and healthy habits lead to happier, healthier dogs. We have put together a guide for you to understand the early signs of periodontal disease.

Plaque builds up on your dog’s teeth during everyday activities such as eating. Particles of food, bacteria and saliva stick to your dog’s teeth and form a layer of plaque which is responsible for that furry feeling that we get when we don’t brush our teeth. Over time, plaque hardens into tartar and can grow into and under your dog’s gums causing redness and bad breath which could lead to pain, bleeding and early tooth loss if left untreated.

Tartar can only be removed by your vet via a scale and polish under general anaesthetic which costs on average £186.52 (2021) with many insurers making it exempt from their policy.


Symptoms of CPD can include:

Bad Breath – We all like to have a kiss from our dog but maybe not so much if they have smelly breath. Does your dog have bad breath? This isn’t as normal as you might think and halitosis, or bad breath, can be an indicator that they have some form of dental disease. However other contributing factors to bad breath such as poor gut health and digestion can be contributing factors.

Discolouration / build-up of plaque or tartar – Much like healthy human teeth, your dog’s teeth should be pearly white in colour. Teeth with yellow and brown stains could be a sign that plaque and tartar have built up.

Gum redness / inflammation – As for humans, gum redness and inflammation are sore and causes gums to bleed. Having tender and swollen gums can be painful for your dog and if left untreated, this condition can worsen and lead to early tooth loss. 

Difficulty eating or loss of appetite – We all know dogs love their food, so changes in their appetite can often indicate that something is not quite right. If your dog seems to struggle to chew or favours chewing on one side also excess drooling can be a sign of oral discomfort.

Discomfort, lumps and bumps – Tooth and gum disease in dogs can cause discomfort and bleeding around the mouth and may contribute to something call an epulis. These can be hard to spot unless they in the front of the mouth. As with any new lumps or bumps you should consult your vet. 

Pawing at mouth – As much as we would love our dogs to be able to tell us what is wrong, we need to observe their actions. If you notice your dog pawing at their mouth, rubbing it or chattering their teeth, this could be your dog trying to tell you of some oral discomfort or irritation.

Canine Periodontal Disease

Here at Frank and Jellys we believe prevention is key and stock a wide variety of products designed to boost oral hygiene.

For quick, easy, non-invasive and of course natural ways to help with your dog’s oral hygiene: