Why does my Jack Russell have bad breath? Explained with Tips

Why Does My Jack Russell Have Bad Breath? Explained With Tips

I’m pretty sure that you love to pet your adorable, energetic, and playful companion. But while petting your JRT, if you find it has bad breath, that might be disturbing.

Before bothering, let’s find out What could be the reason behind this?

So, why does my Jack Russell Terrier have bad breath? If you ever wonder why your JRT has bad breath, there is no one particular reason for it. However, several reasons could potentially cause terrible breath on your JRT. For instance, poor oral care, diet-related issues, diabetes, and kidney or liver diseases. 

Raising a dog is not just something that gives you joy, but it also comes with responsibility. If you need your dog to be happy and healthy, it is essential that you pay good attention to your pet’s health and hygiene.

As of now, we generally understand the reasons behind the bad breath of a JRT; let’s have a look at them.

Why does my JRT  have bad breath?

  • Poor oral care

Oral care is a must. Not just for human beings but also for your pet dogs. Poor oral hygiene can be considered one of the most common reasons for your JRT to have lousy breath.

Gathering too much plaque for a long time on the gums of your JRT could develop bacteria and lead to oral issues. In clinical terms, this is identified as “periodontal disease.

When your JRT gets tooth decay, cavities, and other related oral infections, it ends up causing bad breath. Not just that, even your JRT  might get chronic pain and gum erosion if you do not pay sufficient attention to this.

  • Diet-related issues

Another reason that could possibly cause bad breath on your JRT is diet-related issues, to be more specific irrelevant and unpleasant dietary habits. Speaking of dietary habits, there are two sides to this.

If you completely ignore the dietary pattern of your JRT and just keep feeding unhealthy food all the time, this could have negative consequences.

Experts have shown that not getting proper nutrition makes unusual reactions in your dog’s stomach and changes its tongue’s PH level. And that makes its breath smell unpleasant.

On the other hand, if your JRT keeps eating irrelevant things like garbage, that also could be a reason for bad breath. I mean, how does the dog know what to and what not to eat? Therefore pay attention, and train your JRT.

  • Diabetes, kidney or liver diseases

When you think about the reasons behind the bad breath of your JRT, the first thing that might pop up in your mind would be an oral issue. And yes, that could be a reason.

However, you have to keep in mind that there could be other Severe issues that cause terrible breath in your JRT; this is why you have to be very cautious.

Bad breath can signify that your JRT has serious health concerns such as diabetes, kidney, or liver diseases. As explained by veterinary doctors, if the breath of your JRT smells unusual and slightly sweet-scented, it might have diabetes.

If the breath tends to smell like ammonia or urine, that could indicate kidney disease. If you are considerate about the dog’s oral care yet, the smell of breath is unbearably bad; there’s a chance that the JRT might have liver disease.  

How can I get rid of my Jack Russell’s bad breath?

  • Pay attention to oral care

First, to ensure that your JRT has no terrible breath, the most important and easiest thing to do is pay enough attention to its oral hygiene.

In order to do that, you have to regularly brush the teeth of your JRT using a recommended toothpaste for dogs. Following this habit regularly helps prevent gathering plaque on your dog’s gums and keeps its breath pleasant.

  • Pay attention to the appetite 

Be conscious about what your JRT eats. You cannot deny the importance of the appetite of your pet JRT.

Giving your JRT  healthy and appropriate food rather than random junk food avoids many health concerns, including bad breath. Also, from the pup stage, you can train your JRT not to eat dirt or garbage. 

  • Get your JRT chewy toys and dental treats

Chewy toys and dental treats work like magic to prevent the bad breath of your JRT. You can easily find them at veterinary clinics as well as supermarkets.

Not only do these chewy treats make your JRT happy, they are also indeed helpful to make their teeth strong and clean as they cleanse the plaque on their gum. 

  • Take your JRT to the vet

Assume that you are generally attentive about both the oral hygiene and eating habits of your JRT. Yet you find your dog has terrible breath. This is where you might want to go to a veterinarian.

If you are suspicious about your JRT’s bad breath, it’s always wise to consult a vet and take action accordingly. 

How can I freshen my dog’s breath without brushing?

Brushing your JRT’s teeth on a regular basis might be the ideal way to prevent smelly breath. But, if you find it difficult to follow a brushing routine, you can go along with some other tactics.

As mentioned earlier, chewy toys and dental treats can be used as alternatives for brushing teeth. They are specifically made for dogs and help to keep their breath fresh.

Also, giving more dry food to your JRT rather than wet food that also could be helpful to avoid unpleasant breath because dry food has more tendency to clean plaque. You can also talk to your veterinary doctor and use a recommended gel or a mouth spray as a substitute. 

To wrap things up, if we recap what we discussed, bad breath can be a common concern that occurs among Jack Russell Terriers. In most cases, bad breath is not a grave issue.

Nonetheless, if your JRT has bad breath and you keep avoiding it, this could put your dog into terrible health conditions.

We say that “prevention is better than cure.” So if you take proper actions from the beginning, this is a very easy issue to solve.

Thank you for reading this article. Keep an eye on Jack Russell Owner for more informative articles about your favorite dog breed.


  • George Brown

    George B. is the founder of the JRO Organization. He believes in creating a better world for domestic animals. He believes domestic animals are more vulnerable than other animals, especially dogs, since they have been used to depending on their owners for generations. So, he started JRO to share his ideas and insights while helping vulnerable dogs worldwide. George runs multiple projects on street dogs in developing countries, especially Sri Lanka.

    [email protected]

Similar Posts