Just like the human being, your dog’s breath can smell bad sometimes. Foods they eat, poor nutrition, some diseases may cause their bad breath.
Bad breath occurs due to the bacterial build-up in your dog’s mouth, stomach, and lungs.
Infrequent bad breath can be the result of the food they’ve just eaten. But if you regularly smell the unpleasant odor coming out of your dog’s mouth, you must take it to the vet.
Some essential oils for dog’s breath can help reduce the odor of your pet’s mouth. Some of them can also treat the reason behind the bad breath.
Read on to learn about the essential oils that may help reduce the odor from your dog’s mouth.
Reasons Behind Dog’s Bad Breath
Gum disease is the most common reason behind your dog’s bad breath.  Food particles stuck in the middle of the teeth become the breeding ground for bacteria and plaque.
Smaller dogs such as French bulldogs are prone to get the gum disease, as their teeth are closer together.
It can also happen due to some serious diseases such as gum disease, gastrointestinal, respiratory or kidney problems.
Essential Oils for Dog’s Bad Breath
The antibacterial properties of essential oils help kill the bacteria in your dog’s mouth. Some of them can also treat the gastrointestinal problem, one of the main causes of why your pet’s breath smells so bad.
Here are some of the effective essential oils that you may try:
1. Peppermint Oil
Peppermint oil comes from the hybrid species of water mint and spearmint.
This essential oil is a popular remedy for irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). But, it can also treat some other problems. Peppermint oil is a natural breath freshener. It’s because this oil can kill the odor-causing bacteria in the mouth.
In a lab study published in 2013, peppermint oil along with thyme oil and tea tree oil showed antibacterial activities against oral pathogens. 
Peppermint oil is quite safe for pets. So, you can use this oil to treat your dog’s bad breath.
2. Tea Tree Oil
Tea tree essential oil originates from the leaves of Melaleuca alternifolia, a small tree native to Australia.
This essential oil can fight the bacteria and germs that cause tooth decay, as well as bad breath.
A study was published in 2002. It reports that tea tree oil is more effective than chlorhexidine in killing plaque-causing bacteria. Chlorhexidine is a common oral disinfectant. 
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3. Myrrh Oil
Myrrh oil originates from the reddish-brown dried sap that comes from Commiphora myrrha. The tree is native to southwest Asia and northeastern Africa.
This oil can treat swollen gums, loose teeth, and other oral problems that cause bad breath.
In a study published in 2003, researchers suggest that myrrh oil can help treat gingivitis. 
Moderate use of this oil can reduce the bacterial growth in your dog’s mouth.
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4. Oregano Oil
Oregano essential oil is extracted from Origanum vulgare, a flowering plant that comes from the same family as mint.
This essential oil can treat any oral infection of your dog. It’s because the oil contains antibacterial properties.
Research published in 2012 proved the antibacterial effects of oregano oil. 
This essential oil can treat the bad breath problem of your pet. It’s anti-inflammatory properties also help reduce any pain and discomfort your dog may experience due to oral disease.
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5. Eucalyptus Oil
If your dog’s breath smells bad due to any respiratory issue, eucalyptus oil may help.
This essential oil comes from the selected eucalyptus tree species.
Eucalyptus oil can treat the upper respiratory disease such as kennel cough of your dog.
In an animal study published in 2004, eucalyptus oil showed effective results in treating chronic bronchitis. 
How to Use Essential Oils for Dog’s Breath
Here are the ways essential oils can be used for your dog’s bad breath:
- Mix a few drops of essential oil to your dog’s toothpaste.
- Dilute a few drops of essential oil with a carrier oil. Rub it on your dog’s gum using a cotton swab.
- Put some essential oils into a handkerchief and let your pet inhale its aroma. It may help treat their respiratory problems.
Precautions While Using Essential Oils on Your Dog
Not every essential oil is meant for pets. Some essential oils are pet-friendly. But you need to maintain some extra precautions while using them on your dog, especially on puppies:
- Tea tree oil must be diluted as it’s quite strong for your dog. Improper dilution can be harmful to them.
- Do not use eucalyptus oil on small dogs and puppies.
- Make sure your dog doesn’t swallow the essential oil or the toothpaste made of these oils.
- Consult with a vet before you use any essential oils on your pet.
When Do You Need to Take Your Dog to a Vet?
Bad breath from a dog’s mouth is quite common sometimes. But if it occurs due to some severe illness, proper diagnosis is necessary for the treatment.
Continues bad breath indicates towards a severe gum disease or some other health issues. Take your dog to a vet if you repeatedly smell bad breath.
Once you deal with your dog’s bad breath, you need to make sure it doesn’t happen again.
Take your dog for a regular checkup to the vet at least once a month. Check their diet, make sure they don’t eat or drink anything that can cause smelly breath.
Do not use a toothbrush made for a human to clean your dog’s teeth. There are toothbrushes made for dog’s available in the market.
Your vet may suggest some change in their diet. Maintain the diet strictly and follow-up with the vet regularly.
If you feed your pet dog food instead of homemade food, make sure you’re buying high-quality food.
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