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Can Dogs Use Human Toothpaste? Vets Weigh In.

Is it okay to use human toothpaste on your dog? Vets weigh in on the pros and cons of using human toothpaste on your furry friend.

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Have you ever been brushing your teeth, looked down at your furry friend, and thought to yourself, "I wonder if they could use my toothpaste?" Well, you're in luck! We've got the scoop on everything you need to know about using human toothpaste on dogs. After all, we love our dogs and want nothing but the best for them—including fresh breath!

Can Dogs Use Human Toothpaste?

The Answer is a Big, Fat Yes!

Here's the thing: technically, yes, dogs can use human toothpaste. However, that doesn't mean that they should. Human toothpaste is full of chemicals and other ingredients that can be harmful to dogs if swallowed in large quantities. That's why there are special dog-friendly toothpaste on the market that are specifically designed to be safe for pups.

Still, we know that accidents happen. If your dog happens to swallow some of your toothpaste while they're trying to steal a lick while you're brushing your teeth, don't panic! A small amount probably won't hurt them—but it's always best to err on the side of caution and call your vet just to be sure. They'll likely recommend giving your dog a little bit of water or milk to help flush out their system.

The Benefits and Risks of Using Human Toothpaste on Dogs

So, we've established that yes, dogs can use human toothpaste—but should they? Let's take a look at some of the pros and cons.


1. It's a quick fix in a pinch. If you're out of dog toothpaste and need to clean your pup's teeth ASAP, human toothpaste will do the trick in a pinch. Just be sure to use a small amount and rinse their mouth out thoroughly afterward so they don't ingest any of the ingredients.

2. It's usually cheaper than dog toothpaste. Again, this one is only a benefit if you're in a bind and need to clean your dog's teeth immediately but don't have any dog toothpaste on hand. However, if you have the option to buy dog toothpaste, we recommend spending the extra money—it's worth it for your pup's health!

3. You might already have it in your house. This one goes hand-in-hand with the first two benefits—if you need to brush your dog's teeth and don't have any dog toothpaste handy, human toothpaste is probably already sitting in your bathroom cabinet (whereas you'd have to make a special trip to the store for dog toothpaste). So it's definitely convenient!


1. It contains chemicals that can be harmful to dogs. As we mentioned before, human toothpaste contain chemicals like fluoride that can be harmful to dogs if ingested in large quantities. That's why it's important to only use a tiny bit (think pea size) if you absolutely must use human toothpaste on your pup, and be sure to rinse their mouth out thoroughly afterward.

2. Your dog might not like the taste (or minty smell). Dog tastebuds are different from ours—what tastes good to us might not taste good (or smell good) to them! If you do decide to use human toothpaste on your pup, go for an unscented variety (like Tom's of Maine) or one with a flavor that dogs tend to like, such as bacon or peanut butter. Otherwise, they might end up hating brushing their teeth altogether because of the taste/smell—and nobody wants that.

3. It might lead to digestive issues if swallowed in large quantities. This one goes without saying—ingesting too much human toothpaste can cause upset stomachs or even diarrhea in dogs. So again, only use a tiny amount if you must use human toothpaste on your pup—and never leave them unsupervised while brushing their teeth!

Final Thoughts

When it comes down to it, using human toothpaste on dogs is technically possible—but we wouldn't recommend it except in case of emergency. There are just too many risks involved! Instead, opt for one of the many great dog-friendly options on the market today. Your pup will thank you for it!

The Best Dog Toothpaste for a Healthy Smile
Brushing your dog’s teeth is not only important for their dental health, but it can also help prevent them from getting sick. It’s also a great way to keep their breath fresh and their smile bright.