Are You Curious on How To Clean A Dog Mouth After A Dead Animal in 8 Simple Steps?

Your dog catches a dead rat in the backyard, and you notice it. It’s disgusting and scary considering the dog’s health, isn’t it? That’s why you need to know how to clean a dog mouth that had a dead rat. 

Being concerned in any way is normal for a dog owner. So, you’re probably thinking about how to disinfect dogs mouth.

This raises the question in every pet owner  “What to do if your dog picks up a dead animal”

Generally, you can clean the dog’s mouth using a clean washcloth with salt water, baking soda, or coconut oil. Dip the cloth in any of these liquids and wipe gently in the mouth on the gums, upper roof, and teeth.

If you want to know how to clean a dog mouth that had a dead rat, continue reading this article. Let’s dive into it right off the bat. 

8 Simple Ways to Clean a Dog’s Mouth That Had a Dead Rat

The thought of seeing your canine friend with a dead animal in his mouth is not something you want to entertain. You definitely won’t trust your pooch to show his full affection with a warm lick. 

So to keep a good relationship with your dog, you can use the following methods to clean his mouth.

1. Wipe Your Dog’s Mouth Clean

how to clean a dog mouth that had a dead rat
Inspecting a dog’s mouth

Using a clean damp towel, wipe your dog’s mouth. You can use clean salt water, baking soda, or coconut oil. These solutions will help with disinfection. 

You will need to wrap the washcloth around your index finger. Apply the cleaning solution to the washcloth and sit next to the dog. 

Then hold your dog gently by wrapping your other arm around him to have access to the head. Make sure your posture is correct for your comfort during the process. You want to be at ease when doing this. 

So, the next aspect will be to open the dog’s mouth wide so you can see the gums, tongue, and teeth. Now, gently start wiping these components. Be cautious not to take your finger far into the mouth to prevent gagging. 

Find Out: Why Do Dogs Lick Blankets? 6 Reasons and How to Stop It

2. Brush Your Dog’s Teeth Using Dog Toothpaste

Dog owners should brush their dog’s teeth daily to ensure proper dental health. Doing this reduces the foul smell from your dog’s mouth. 

If the dog has a dead rat, brushing is also one way to help protect its mouth. Generally, you want to use canine toothpaste with dog-specific flavor. And not human toothpaste with lots of fluorides that are naturally poisonous to dogs

Similarly, get a dog toothbrush. This toothbrush is different from the one humans use. It’s made with specifications to match the dog’s teeth only. 

With a suitable toothbrush and paste, you can brush the dog’s teeth and mouth in general and definitely eliminate some bacteria or dangerous micro-organisms the dog could have ingested when it had a dead rat in its mouth. 

When scrubbing gums and lips, don’t be rough. Do it gently, as you don’t want to hurt the tender tissues in these areas

3. Provide Your Dog With Dental Treats

Dental treats are chews your dog can eat and improve its dental hygiene. However, these treats must meet the standards set by the Veterinary Oral Health Council’s Seal of Acceptance. In principle, all packages must have a seal indicating that the treats can help to control tartar buildup

You can provide the treats daily from when your dog had the rat until a few days. Dog treats help to form a barrier on the surface of the dog’s teeth. Bacteria and plaque cannot penetrate through the barrier to form tartar. 

Dog treats can also stimulate increased saliva production. Naturally, saliva contains beneficial enzymes that help to fade off any harmful bacteria in the mouth. 

4. Give the Dog Plenty of Water and Mouthwash

A dog drinking water
Dog drinking water

Another simple way how to clean a dog’s mouth that had a rat is by giving your dog water in plenty. 

Water is a great liquid and helps with rinsing the dog’s mouth to eliminate any substances still stuck on the teeth or gums. 

As you provide water, you can add doggy mouthwash or additives to it for a more effective disinfectant that can kill harmful bacteria or other toxic substances lodged in the dog’s mouth. 

The mouthwash also ensures a refreshed mouth. Instead of exhaling foul odor, your dog’s mouth will produce a fresh breath. 

Using mouthwash and other additives, follow the instructions on the bottle. You can give the dental water additive daily for better results. 

Also Read: Coyote Husky Mix: The Ultimate Guide

5. Use Flavored Dental Powder Enriched With Probiotics on Dog Food

There are lots of dental powders that can help your dog’s dental health. Most of them are enriched with probiotics that enhance the growth of beneficial bacteria in the mouth. 

These probiotics can also eliminate plaque-building bacteria that cause infections and bad breath in the mouth. This powder is usually applied to dog meals. You can start applying it immediately after discovering your dog’s scavenging action. 

To be sure it will work, apply the powder daily in the next few days. It will kill all the germs you feared would cause damage to your dog’s health. 

6. Wipe Your Dog’s Muzzle With a Clean Cloth

A dog’s muzzle is probably the first part that would reach anything a dog picks in the mouth. When it picks a dead rat, the muzzle goes first while smelling the carcass, especially the nose. 

Get a waterless shampoo and clean the muzzle. You can apply the shampoo on a clean damp washcloth or towel and scrub away the traces or remnants that are stuck on the muzzle. 

7. Apply Dental Spray to Your Dog’s Mouth

Some dogs will not just allow being held into awkward postures for mouth cleaning. You cannot force such dogs, or you risk losing their temper. 

A quick and easy way to have their mouth cleaned is by spritzing a dental spray in the mouth. These sprays can kill any bacterial buildup that could lead to dental diseases. In the end, they also refreshen your doggy’s mouth. 

8. Take Your Dog to the Vet for a Checkup

All said and done, one thing remains essential–a dental checkup at the vet. You probably don’t know whether your canine friend has already munched one dead rodent. 

Going for a checkup at the veterinarian is a step of caution. You want to be sure that there are no other implications associated with eating or having a rat in the dog’s mouth. 

Rats may not transmit scabies but remember this is a dead rat. It could be a host for lots of hungry disease-causing bacteria and other pathogens

The vet will guide you on what to do following such an incident. The vet could recommend a dental cleaning session. This is also called dental prophylaxis

During dental prophylaxis, the vet will thoroughly clean the dog’s mouth to ensure it’s free of anything that would cause harm. They are experts in this field, so you are guaranteed they know how to identify and handle dental problems in animals. 

If your dog refuses you to clean its teeth, you can be sure the vet will deal with any such resistance. 

Generally, during prophylaxis, the vet places the dog under anesthesia and can now perform the rest of the processes.

For your information, regular dental checkups should be part of your dog care routine. Whether you knew it had something foul in the mouth, it’s just good practice to be in the know. 

Precautions to Take When Cleaning a Dog’s Mouth

Follow these precautions when cleaning your dog’s mouth:

  • Don’t use human toothpaste or toothbrush on your dog. Remember that human toothpaste has plenty of fluoride in it. Such amounts of fluoride can harm your dog’s health. 
  • When wiping or brushing the dog’s mouth, avoid taking your hand or brushing too far into the mouth. The dog could gag. 
  • Be gentle 
  • Don’t rush the process, as that would make your dog uncomfortable 
  • In case of inflamed, broken, or red gums or rotten teeth, visit the vet immediately for further checkups and treatment. 


How to disinfect a dog’s mouth?

Generally, you can clean the dog’s mouth using a clean washcloth with salt water, baking soda, or coconut oil. Dip the cloth in any of these liquids and wipe gently in the mouth on the gums, upper roof, and teeth.

what to do if your dog picks up a dead animal?

Picking up dead animals is not an uncommon behaviour in dogs. If your fur friend has done this, immediately discard the dead animal away and disinfect your dog’s mouth.

What to do if my dog has a dead rat in his mouth?

Here is what to do if your dog carries a dead rat in his mouth;

  • Discard the dead rat
  • Wash your dog’s mouth with water
  • Brush your dog’s teeth with dog toothpaste\closey observe your dog for a few days.

Final Thoughts

Knowing how to clean a dog mouth that had a dead rat is an essential skill for any responsible pet owner. Besides enhancing your dog’s health, this move protects the health of the humans around the dog. 

However, it’s worth considering that prevention is always better than cure. As a pet owner, you should ensure your dog is well-fed, exercised, and regularly treated for fleas and ticks to prevent them from hunting and catching rodents.

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