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Pet Dentistry Can Be Fear Free


February is Pet Dental Health Month. Dr. Jan Bellows announces HERE on my national Steve Dale’s Pet World radio show that some veterinary dentists are now on board with the Fear Free initiative.

Dr. Jan Bellows

Fear Free began as a means to lower pets’ fear, anxiety, and stress at the veterinary clinic. And now, the Fear Free program has expanded to support welfare in our homes. Fear Free Happy Homes offers information for pet owners to support their pets’ best possible life.

Who would think dentistry could ever be Fear Free?

Bellows, who is a veterinary dentist, notes that pets don’t brush their own teeth but explains how it can be done in a low-stress way. And similarly, how veterinarians can use low-stress methods to examine a pet’s teeth. It’s easy: Check out the Veterinary Oral Health Council to discern which dental products are real and which are greatly about marketing. The trick is to make dentistry fun.

Dr. Bellows warns not to offer dogs ice cubes, deer antlers, or anything that doesn’t bend. These things can break a dog’s teeth.


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Steve Dale is a certified animal behavior specialist who has been a trusted voice in the world of pet health for over 20 years. You have likely heard him on the radio, read him in print and online, and seen him speaking at events all over the world. His contributions to advancing pet wellness have earned him many an award and recognition around the globe.

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