Doggy breath. There’s nothing worse than getting a big sloppy kiss for your adorable dog and smelling like something died inside his mouth.

The biggest culprit for your dog’s bad breath is bad oral hygiene. Think about it. What would happen if you didn’t brush your teeth for a few days, a week, or never?

If your dog’s mouth is the picture of health, then you should talk with your vet to determine the cause of your dog’s bad breath.

dog and woman with open mouth

I am not a vet, so I recommend talking with your vet, doing some research of your own, and then making a decision based on your dog’s individual health needs.

Here are 8 home remedies to help your dog battle his bad breath:

1. Brush your dog’s teeth daily

Brush your dog’s teeth every day, it takes one minute and it could save your dog from bad breath, gum disease, and other health issues that come with bad oral care. 

Choose a toothpaste that has limited ingredients and one that your dog likes the taste of. I tested several of the top dog toothpastes on the market, I was amazed at the results.

2. Dental chews

Dog’s clean their teeth naturally by chewing on things. Supplying him a good dental chew will aid in a healthy habit. My two favorite dental chews are Whimzees and raw bones we get from a local source.

3. Probiotics

A good probiotic/prebiotic supplement can help your dog with bad breath, lack of energy, coat, eyes, ears, constipation or diarrhea, gas, and even boost the immune system. I recommend every dog take a high-quality probiotic, bad breath or not. 

I loveDaily Dog by FullBucket so much, I reached out to them and they gave me a coupon code just for you! Use coupon code RescueDogs101 for a 20% discount.

My dogs get Daily Dog by FullBucket, it’s the only probiotic I recommend.

4. Crunchy veggies: apples, carrots, celery

Carrots, apples, and celery are healthy and yummy treats that my dogs love. Chewing raw vegetables help by scrubbing plaque from your dog’s teeth, but it’s unlikely it will help existing dental disease. 

5. Apple cider vinegar and water additives

Adding a ½ to 1 teaspoon of apple cider vinegar (ACV) to your dog’s water bowl can be a simple way to keep that bad breath at bay. ACV has antimicrobial properties, reducing the bacteria in your dog’s mouth.

If you want a tasteless and orderless solution, you may want to opt for one of the many water additive products available for dogs. (Quick-link to search Chewy)

6. Coconut oil

Coconut oil is a great health supplement for your dog, for his coat, paws, teeth, and ears.  

The natural anti-fungal, antibiotic, antiviral properties make coconut oil a great option for brushing your dog’s teeth. Simply apply a small amount to your dogs’ toothbrush and brush away.

My dogs will lick a spoon full of coconut oil because they love it so much. I also like to add coconut oil to their homemade frozen dog treats.

It’s important to note that Coconut oil works great as maintenance but is unlikely to remove any existing plaque buildup.

7. Mint

Mint has natural antiviral, antimicrobial, antibacterial, and antifungal benefits. Mint is also loaded with vitamins A and C, and other minerals that have great health benefits for you and your dog.

Ideas on how to add mint to your dog’s diet:

  • Add 2-3 fresh mint leaves each day to your dog’s food
  • Make dog treats with fresh mint
  • Make mint water for dogs by adding a handful of fresh mint leaves to a large pitcher of water. You can add other fruits or veggies such as cucumbers. Infuse for at least 2-3 hours before serving. 

Warning: Large quantities of mint can cause diarrhea, vomiting, aliver or kidney problems. Limit feeding your dog mint to 2-3 leaves per day.

8. Fresh curly leaf parsley

Did you know, one of the reasons restaurants garnish plates with herbs like parsley and mint is that they are a natural breath freshener and a digestive aid?

Parsley is rich in antioxidants and high in chlorophyll, a chemical said to be antimicrobial and a natural deodorizer.

I am adding parsley to my herb garden this spring. 

Dog bad breath wrapped up

The first step to take if your dog has bad breath is to start brushing his teeth every day.

If your dog’s teeth are really bad with a lot of plaque buildup, talk with your vet about dental cleaning for your dog. A dental cleaning can give you a clean slate to start with.

Then you can continue to keep your dog’s mouth clean by brushing daily and using a few or all eight natural fresh breath ideas.

  1. Brush your dog’s teeth daily
  2. Dental chews
  3. Probiotics
  4. Crunchy veggies: apples, carrots, celery
  5. Apple cider vinegar and water additives
  6. Coconut oil
  7. Mint
  8. Fresh Curly Leaf Parsley

Next up

Please leave a comment below and share your best tip for keeping your dogs mouth fresh and minty clean.

About the Author

Debi McKee

Debi McKee is the expert behind Rescue Dogs 101 where she guides you in your journey of adopting and raising a rescue dog every step of the way. She is a mom of 3 human kids and 4 dogs and volunteers for a local dog rescue and Humane Society. Click here for more about Debi and her passion for helping you and your dog.

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