Do you share your life with a Chihuahua that loves to kiss? Maybe he’s a bit sensitive, so whisper it quietly, but have you noticed recently your Chihuahua has bad breath?
Chihuahua bad breath is a common concern as it is with all dogs. What are the reasons for your Chihuahua having bad breath? We subscribe most of the reasons for his bad breath to your Chihuahua’s dental health.
Not every reason is because of dental health though, your Chihuahua might have just taken a deep dive into some cat poop, although it’s gross, it’s only a short-term issue. But allowing for the odd case of poor food choice, it’s a serious issue. Small dogs, like your Chihuahua, are more susceptible to the problem of bad breath.
Because dental health is a serious issue, it might be worth your time to do some research into why your Chihuahua has developed bad breath. So let’s dive in and look at what might cause your Chi to have stinky breath and what you can do about it.
Common Cause Of Chihuahua Bad Breath
Have you ever missed cleaning your teeth for an entire day? You don’t have to answer that. But if you have, you’ll have noticed your teeth don’t feel as smooth as usual. Their surface feels rough or fuzzy when you touch them with your tongue.
Well, that’s a build-up of plaque beginning on your teeth. Plaque is a colony of living microbes surrounded by a sticky layer. The sticky layer helps the microbes stick to your teeth. You notice this happening within a few hours of not cleaning your teeth.
Imagine how much plaque (living microbes) can grow on your Chihuahua’s teeth without cleaning them for a few days. If you see a yellow build up on your Chihuahua’s teeth this is tartar. Without removing the plaque, it mixes with saliva, hardens and forms tartar.
The bacteria in your Chi’s mouth feed on sugars found in your dog’s food, producing acids. These acids can create cavities in the teeth, gingivitis and tooth decay. Plaque can attack under the gumline where you can’t see it.
As time drags on with no treatment, the situation will only become more serious. Plaque build-up will push gums away from the teeth, creating a bigger area for bacteria to exploit. This has serious consequences for your Chihuahuas health. And is a serious contributing factor to the cause of his bad breath.
Let’s look at what other illnesses may cause your Chihuahua to have bad breath.
If your dog, unfortunately, has diabetes his breath won’t be a nasty smell. It’s more of a sickly sweet or fruity smell. It may even smell a little like nail polish.
If you are experiencing this for the first time, you need to look out for any other signs of diabetes. Frequently urinating, drinking more water than is usual. Along with the smelly breath, it would be a good time to take him to your vet and have a thorough check-up. If it proves to be diabetes it is treatable, and better to find out as soon as you can.
2. Kidney Disease
The kidneys are there to process toxins. When they are not in good working order, the toxins build up in the dog’s body. It can produce a urine-like, bad-smelling breath. Kidney disease is serious and a vet’s visit is essential.
3. Liver Disease
If your Chihuahua has terrible smelling breath, vomiting and there is a yellow tinge to her gums then she might have something wrong with her liver. Liver disease in dogs and humans, is very serious and requires immediate medical attention.
You might find this useful:
Treatments For A Chihuahua’s Bad Breath
It’s important to know the cause, so you can get rid of the smelly breath as soon as possible. And there are several treatments available.
As we discussed, the most common cause is dental hygiene. If this is the case with your Chihuahua here’s what to do. Pay a visit to your vet and ask him to perform a dental cleaning. Your vet will run some checks on your Chihuahua, one will be to ensure he can stand up to a general anesthetic.
To be on the safe side, your vet will probably run other tests to discount other potential issues. During the procedure, your vet will check all of your Chihuahua’s teeth and cleaning them. If they cannot save any teeth, they will remove them.
If your Chihuahua is a secret cat poop eater, do what you can to keep it away from your dog. If you suspect he’s getting into any trash or has a fancy for any dead creatures, keep a wary eye on him for that.
A qualified vet needs to treat the other three serious illnesses I described. Once everything is sorted, you will find your Chihuahua’s breath returning to normal.
You might also like to check out:
How To Prevent Bad Breath In A Chihuahua
Prevention is better than the cure, as they say. And the same as your own dental health, if you can try and brush your Chihuahua’s teeth each day. I know many dogs hate having a toothbrush stuck in their mouth. It requires a certain amount of patience. But really, it’s necessary.
If you have a new puppy or thinking about getting one, then start them on this routine as early as you can, the sooner the better. Yes, they will lose their puppy teeth, you’re not trying to save them or anything, you need to get your Chihuahua into accepting he needs a good tooth cleaning at a young age. He will give you fewer problems later on.
If he’s an older dog, it’s never too late to clean his teeth. You might need a lot more patience. But persevere for his health sake.
There’s no question dental health is important and as a loving Chihuahua parent, you are going to do everything you can to keep him in perfect health. After all, he’s family and you don’t want your Chihuahua with bad breath.
There are several other things you can do to keep his mouth healthy and smelling of… well, I won’t say roses, let’s just say sweet.
Try an oral health diet or dental chews, to help remove plaque. Always have a talk to your vet and get their advice.