Herbs for Pets

Natural Tooth Brush for Dogs

Dental Care for Your Pets

When dental problems in dogs arise, teeth must be treated by a veterinarian but herbs can help to prevent tooth decay, gingivitis, pyorrhea, tooth abscesses and mouth sores in dogs and cats. Long before toothbrushes made of plastic were developed, roots like Marshmallow and Licorice were used to clean teeth. Licorice root (from neem trees) for instance can be prepared very easily, simply by peeling the bark off one end and flaying the fibers.

How to make a licorice stick toothbrush for dogs


1. Use fresh or dried Marshmallow or Licorice root. Cut them into 12 cm or 5 inch pieces.
Simmering Licorice Sticks
2. Peel the ends and put them in an enamel, glass, corning ware or stainless steel pot, add 3 or 4 cinnamon sticks and 10 whole cloves, cover with purified water, bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to a medium simmer, cook until the sticks are rehydrated and slightly tender (2 or 3 hours).
Soaking Licorice
3. Put the pieces carefully - flat on their sides - into a shallow container and cover with brandy. Put a lid on the container and let them soak for 24 hours.

4. After soaking, take them out of the brandy and let them dry completely (during this process, the alcohol in the brandy will evaporate and go away).
Licorice Herb Toothbrushes for Pets
Store the dry roots in a covered glass jar (Ball or Mason canning jars work great). Just make sure the sticks are completely dry inside and out or you will invite mold and spoilage. You can air dry or use a food dehydrator for the process.

Before you brush the pet's teeth, soak the end for a short time in hot water, this will soften the bark. Or it can be soaked in a medicinal tea for dogs or cats with gingivitis. A tea can be made from Sage or Propolis and/or Calendula to be used as an herbal mouth wash. The end can be dipped frequently while brushing the dog's teeth, to bath and medicate the gums with the liquid. Work the frayed end massaging the teeth, between the teeth and the gums. Most pets love chewing bark and sticks, so this makes the experience far more natural for them.

You won't even need to use a pet toothpaste, since all the necessary ingredients are in the root. It tastes like sweet, spicy candy and will really freshens the dog's or cat's breath.

General Mouth Care

Licorice root is a excellent for the mouth: It promotes anti-cavity action, reduces tartar, and has an anti-inflammatory and antibacterial effect.


The natural root or twig toothbrushes can be used many times. When the end wears or becomes dirty just cut it off and peel the bark and begin a new end to work with.


After brushing your dogs teeth, rub fresh Sage leaves, over the teeth and gum line, it will cleanse and strengthen the teeth and gums. Sage is a common ingredient in tooth-powders. Sage is particularly tonic and stimulating to the gums and mucous membrane in the mouth.

Dietary Supplements

Sometimes dietary supplements are needed to protect and heal the gums. Vitamins (especially vitamin C and vitamin E), and antioxidants like CoQ10 are often prescribed to promote gum health.


To purchase dried, untreated licorice or marshmallow roots we recommend Pacific Botanicals. Their herbs are of unsurpassed quality.
Book of Veterinary Homeopathy

For a complete guide in learning how to give an herbal remedy, repeat the dose and how long to administer the medicines view the Herbs to the Rescue Treatment Charts for Dogs, Cats, Horses, Birds, Pet Rats and Urban Chickens.

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