My dog’s breath stinks: What are the causes of their bad breath?

Dogs, like humans, can have bad breath at times. This is an issue that can be caused by a number of factors, and the reasons may not always be as simple to identify. It's important to know what the causes could be - before giving them any medication or addressing the issue in any other way. As a dog owner, we know that one of the most rewarding aspects of pet ownership is spending time with your furry friend. However, if your dog's mouth smells bad, there could be a serious problem that needs your attention. To help you better understand what causes bad breath in dogs, we have listed some potential causes below.

Causes of bad breath in dogs

1) Plaque on Teeth

One of the most common reasons for bad breath in your dog is plaque. This type of film builds up on teeth, and it contains bacteria, food particles, and other debris, which will produce an unpleasant odor in your dog's mouth. Veterinary Dentist visits can help remove plaque buildup because brushing alone won't always do the job well enough to remove all the gunk from around their teeth. The best way to prevent plaque buildup is by brushing your dog's teeth at least once a week. Be sure that you're getting the toothpaste in-between their teeth. Avoid using human toothpaste because it could irritate them or make their breath worse. It can also be helpful to use dental chews for your dog.

2) Bad Eating Habits

Sometimes, unsupervised eating directly leads to bad breath for your dog. If your pet regularly gets into the garbage, puts his mouth into the dustbin, or has access to decomposing animal remains, then his bad breath could be because of such bad snacking. Dogs also universally seem to love poop; not only is this smelly, but it's also unhygienic! Some dogs eat their own poop which causes them some serious hygiene issues and foul mouth odor. The act of eating poop by dogs is called coprophagia. If you can’t do much to stop your dog from eating poop, you should surely give him our Premium Advanced Probiotic Formula. It will not only help your dog fight bad breath but will also increase his immunity giving them healthier skin and more energy.

3) Diabetes

A dog's breath should always be fresh. If it smells sweet or fruity, there may be a serious issue. If your dog's breath has this scent, it could be due to diabetes. Diabetes is a treatable condition in which a dog's pancreas produces insufficient amounts or no insulin to process sugars properly. Uncontrolled diabetes can also suppress the immune system, allowing bacteria in the dog's mouth to grow unchecked, leading to bad breath. Apart from bad breath, other symptoms include thirstiness, increased urination, and weight loss despite increased appetite. If you see these signs, we would recommend you to talk to your veterinarian.

4) Kidney Disease

A dog's breath that smells like urine is a warning sign of kidney disease. The kidneys are responsible for eliminating waste, and if it builds up in the bloodstream, that means they're releasing toxic gas into your dog's breath. These gases smell bad and won't go away even if you brush your dog's teeth or give him some flavored chews. Kidney disease can result in high urea levels in the body, causing continuous bad breath in dogs. This needs to be examined by the veterinarian.

5) Liver Disease

If your dog's breath smells like ammonia, this could be a sign of liver disease. This is because the liver can no longer properly filter out toxins, so stinky sulfur compounds, such as thiols, are released into the lungs. While breathing, your dog will automatically release these gases through his breath. Along with stinking breath, if your dog is also vomiting and has diarrhea, you should consider giving him our Probiotic Formula. This will enhance his digestive health and increase immunity.

6) Cavities or Gum Disease

Just like humans, dogs also suffer from cavities and bad gums. This is often visible if you pay attention to your dog's teeth inside his mouth. Due to the onset of cavities and bad gums, oral bacteria break down tooth enamel and create an odor that is considered bad breath in dogs. You can lift up your dog's lip and examine their gums. The most common sign of bad gums is when your dog's gums are dark red and inflamed. This shows that there's a gum infection that needs treatment. Swollen gums in dogs can be treated with specialized chews or other medicines. If you find that there's a cavity in your dog's tooth, this cavity may be the cause of your dog's breath stink. You should see a vet for this issue.

7) Licking their body

Dogs are known to lick their body, especially their private parts. If a dog is constantly licking their bum, this can cause bad breath. The anal sacs located just inside the rectum produce an odor that smells like feces. When your dog licks or scratches these areas with his mouth, the odor sticks to his tongue resulting in bad breath.


It is essential to know the cause of bad breath in your dog because it can indicate that there may be a problem. If your dog has an oral disease, you should contact your veterinarian for treatment and prevention strategies. In addition, if your pet does not have any health problems but still smells bad, make sure they are receiving proper dental care. To ensure that your pet is getting the best oral hygiene possible, make sure you brush their teeth at least 1-2 times a week and use dog toothpaste to help with bad breath. If they are still experiencing persistent oral health issues or an underlying disease, it may be time to see the vet for treatment recommendations.