Prevention is the best protection to avoid periodontal (gum) disease. Your Lhasa apso should visit the veterinarian regularly for a complete oral tooth exam and cleaning above and below the gum line

Diet should include dry, crunchy foods that help stimulate the gums and remove some of the plaque accumulations.

Toys can be a big help too! Many chew toys are now designed to help with tarter and plaque build up as well as providing your Lhasa apso puppy with necessary amusement.

Brushing your Lhasa apsoís teeth regularly is the first step in preventing periodontal disease. This will keep the plaque and tartar from building up. Introduce dental care at a young age. Begin by slowly touching your petís mouth and running your finger along the lips. Gradually move on to rubbing the gums and tooth line. Encouraging words will help while consistently getting your puppy used to having itís mouth touched. When your pup has adjusted to this handling you can start by wrapping a piece of gauze around your finger and gently rubbing the teeth. This will help remove residue from the teeth and gums. Once your puppy gets used to the gauze, start adding a little pet toothpaste. Pet toothpaste is flavored so they will actually enjoy the taste. After your puppy is used to the gauze and paste you can begin brushing with a soft bristle toothbrush. Gently hold the mouth closed with one hand while lifting the lip on one side of the mouth. Carefully brush the outside surface of the teeth. Focus mainly on the outside of the teeth and gums. This is where the salivary glands are located and problems are more likely to occur in these areas. As your puppy accepts this routine brushing you can then try brushing the insides of the teeth. Brushing should be done on a daily basis and take about 5 minutes.

When brushing is complete, provide your puppy with a special biscuit as a reward for his/her good behavior.

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WARNING:  Lhasa apsos commonly retain baby teeth.  This is not a major problem when retained teeth are detected early and removed.  This will allow the adult teeth to replace them in the proper time.  However, when retained baby teeth remain too long or in some cases permanently, many orthodontic issues can arrise such as cavities from overcrowding, bite misalignment, mouth and facial sores, and even infections that can become life threatening.  Always ask your vet to check your Lhasa apso puppies mouth during routine examinations and avoid costly problems that may arise later.