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Research article2024Peer reviewedOpen access

Evaluation of a Thiol-Detection Test to Assess Tooth Brushing Efficacy in Dogs

Enlund, Karolina Brunius; Rahunen, Nadja; Thelander, Sofia; Olsen, Lena


Periodontal disease affects more than 80% of dogs over 3 years of age, making it the most common disease in dogs seen in veterinary clinics. Gingivitis, the early-stage of periodontal disease, may be reversible with tooth brushing. Thiol, a sulfuric compound, has previously been shown to correlate with the degree of periodontal disease. In this study, a thiol-detection test was used to investigate daily tooth brushing efficacy in dogs. Twenty-two beagle dogs were subjected to daily tooth brushing for 2 weeks. Gingival index (GI), plaque index (PI), calculus index (CI) and thiol were assessed before treatment (day 1), after 1 week (day 7), after last treatment (day 14), and 2 weeks after treatment finished (day 29). Degree of stress was also assessed using a fear, anxiety and stress (FAS) scale. Both 7 and 14 days of daily tooth brushing showed an improvement in oral health. Thiol decreased significantly and GI and PI improved significantly after 1 and 2 weeks of brushing. No significant improvement in CI was shown. After an additional 2 weeks without brushing, GI and PI had returned to baseline levels. Stress levels decreased from day 1 to day 14. This study suggests that a thiol-detection test can be used to assess tooth brushing efficacy. Tooth brushing has a positive effect on the oral health in dogs as soon as 7 days after commencement.


dental health; calculus; FAS; gingivitis; periodontal disease; dental home care; plaque

Published in

Journal of Veterinary Dentistry
2024, Volume: 41, number: 3, pages: 183 - 191