20 Vet-Recommended Dental Chews for Pets 🐶🐱

In the quest for maintaining your pet’s dental health, choosing the right dental chews can be as critical as selecting their regular diet. Below, we’ve curated a list of top vet-recommended dental chews and products based on the latest VOHC (Veterinary Oral Health Council) data for both dogs and cats.

Key Takeaways:

  • Efficacy: Look for products with VOHC approval indicating efficacy in reducing plaque and tartar.
  • Availability: Products are available either at consumer outlets or through veterinary prescriptions.
  • Variety: From treats to diets, and water additives to gels, there’s a suitable product for every pet’s preference and need.

🐶 Top 10 Dental Chews and Products for Dogs

RankProductTypeVOHC ClaimCompanyAvailabilityYear Awarded
1Prescription Diet® Canine t/d®Dental DietPlaque, TartarHill’s Pet NutritionVeterinary Only1998
2Purina DentaLife Daily Oral CareDog TreatsTartarNestle Purina PetCareConsumer2016
3Canine Greenies®Dental ChewsPlaque, TartarMars PetCareConsumer2007
4OraVet® Dental Hygiene ChewsDental ChewsTartarBoehringer IngelheimConsumer2016
5HealthyMouth® Water AdditiveWater AdditivePlaqueHealthyMouth LLCConsumer2008
6C.E.T.® VEGGIEDENT® FR3SH ChewsDental TreatsPlaque, TartarVirbacConsumer2020
7Checkups ChewsDental ChewsPlaque, TartarSugar Creek, Diamond FoodsConsumer2008
8TropiClean Fresh Breath DentalHealth SolutionPlaqueCosmos CorporationConsumer2020
9Pedigree® Dentastix™ AdvancedDental ChewsPlaque, TartarMars PetcareConsumer2018
10ProDen PlaqueOff® Dental CareBonesPlaque, TartarSwedenCareConsumer2022

🐱 Top 10 Dental Chews and Products for Cats

RankProductTypeVOHC ClaimCompanyAvailabilityYear Awarded
1Prescription Diet Feline t/d®DietPlaque, TartarHill’s Pet NutritionVeterinary Only2001
2Feline Greenies®Dental TreatsTartarNutro/GreeniesConsumer2005
3Healthymouth® Water AdditiveWater AdditivePlaqueHealthyMouth LLCConsumer2011
4ProDen PlaqueOff PowderPowderPlaque, TartarSwedenCareConsumer2020
5Royal Canin Feline DentalDietTartarRoyal CaninConsumer2014
6Purina DentaLife Oral CareCat TreatsTartarNestle Purina PetCareConsumer2016
7Healthymouth® Topical GelOral GelPlaqueHealthyMouth LLCConsumer2011
8Whiskas® DentabitesCat TreatsTartarWhiskasConsumer2017
9Science Diet® Oral Care for CatsDietPlaque, TartarHill’s Pet NutritionConsumer2001
10Purina Pro Plan Veterinary DietsDH Feline FormulaTartarNestle Purina PetCareVeterinary Only2006

These products have been rigorously tested and approved by veterinary oral health experts to ensure they provide effective dental care for your beloved pets. Whether you opt for a daily treat or a special dental diet, incorporating these products into your pet’s routine can significantly improve their oral hygiene and overall health. Remember, regular veterinary check-ups are crucial to maintaining your pet’s dental health alongside these products.


Interview with a Veterinary Dental Specialist: Dr. Emily Saunders

Question: What should pet owners look for when choosing dental chews for their pets?

Dr. Saunders: It’s essential to select chews that are not only enjoyable for the pet but also effective in combating dental issues. Look for products that carry a Veterinary Oral Health Council (VOHC) seal. This indicates the chew has been scientifically tested to reduce plaque or tartar. The size and texture are also crucial; the chew should match the pet’s size and chewing style to prevent any choking hazards or dental damage.

Question: How do dental chews actually work to improve a pet’s dental health?

Dr. Saunders: Dental chews act through mechanical abrasion, helping to scrub away plaque from the pet’s teeth as they chew. Ingredients such as sodium hexametaphosphate can also be integrated to disrupt tartar formation chemically. It’s a proactive approach to dental care, ideally combined with regular teeth brushing and routine veterinary check-ups.

Question: Are there specific ingredients in dental chews that pet owners should avoid?

Dr. Saunders: Absolutely. Avoid chews containing excessive sugars or artificial additives, as these can actually promote dental decay. Additionally, some chews might be made with ingredients that cause digestive upset in sensitive pets, so it’s always wise to consult with a vet before introducing a new dental product to your pet’s regimen.

Question: Can you describe how dental health impacts overall pet health?

Dr. Saunders: Dental health is intricately linked to overall health in pets. Poor oral hygiene can lead to periodontal disease, which is associated with systemic effects such as heart disease and kidney infection. The mouth is the entryway to the body, so keeping it healthy helps to keep the whole body healthy.

Question: What advancements in pet dental health products have you found particularly impressive in recent years?

Dr. Saunders: The integration of enzymatic treatments in chews has been a game-changer. These enzymes help break down plaque biochemically, offering an additional layer of cleaning. Additionally, the development of species-specific products, which cater to the unique dental needs of different pets like cats and dogs, has made tailored dental care more accessible to pet owners.

Question: With such a variety of products, how can pet owners ensure they’re choosing the most effective options?

Dr. Saunders: Besides the VOHC seal, I recommend looking at the clinical studies backing the product, which are often listed on the manufacturer’s website. Also, consider the pet’s age, breed, and any specific health concerns by discussing with your vet. This personalized approach ensures that the dental chew not only fits the pet’s preferences but also their health requirements.

Question: What’s a common misconception about pet dental care that you’d like to address?

Dr. Saunders: Many owners believe that bad breath in pets is normal; it’s not. It’s often a sign of underlying dental or gastrointestinal issues. Regular dental care, starting from a young age, can prevent many of these issues and contribute to a longer, healthier life for your pet.

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