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The tooth fairy massages Wheels' ears with lavender oil.

Hi, I’m Wheels, a Boston terrier. You may already know me. I am a special contributor to I write about my experiences. You might say I write about “a dog’s life”—a lucky dog’s life! 

With school starting back up, everyone is dashing about buying school uniforms and school supplies, getting physicals and dental check-ups, haircuts—all kinds of things to be prepared for the new school year. 

Households can be hectic for sure. But don’t forget the canine member of your family. We need physicals, inoculations and grooming care just like the kids. One important part of our needs (one that’s sometimes overlooked) is our dental health. Don’t worry! You don’t have to feel guilty if you can’t afford the orthodontist. We just need good, basic dental care.

Dogs can chew all the “Greenies” they can get, and even brush with special, beef-flavored toothpaste, but it does not always leave our choppers tarter-free and our mouth smelling like puppy breath. That’s when a professional cleaning is necessary.

My doctor, called a veterinarian, is Dr. Colleen Murray. She is located at the edge of the Katy Trail, and the clinic is called Katy Trail Animal Hospital. When my owner asked Dr. Murray about my teeth, she said, “Good dental hygiene in our pets is very important. The buildup of bacteria in your pet’s mouth affects more than your pet's breath. Bacteria causes oral disease and diseases in other organs like the heart, liver and kidneys.”

I sure don’t want that! My owner called the Texas Tooth Fairy and scheduled a home visit.

To take advantage of a “group discount,” it was arranged that the tooth fairy would see my sister, Phoebe JoAnn, and my good friend Hotei, a French bulldog, on the same afternoon. We all gathered at my house and anxiously awaited the arrival of the fairy.

When she came, she didn’t look like the fairies I had seen before. She didn’t fly around and light up or wave a wand and sing magical songs. She probably wasn’t like those fairies. She said her name is Lorie Dodd and she grew up on a farm in Cisco, Texas. She wore regular doctor clothes, and she carried with her a big, black bag.

Everyone sat down in the living room and visited with the tooth fairy. She had learned canine teeth cleaning skills in Los Angeles. She told us that the process of teeth cleaning in one’s home, without the use of anesthetic, started in California but was now catching on here, especially in Dallas where we live. Seven years ago, when she first began her business, she was the only person practicing around here, but now there are four or five dental hygienists like her in our city, she said.

She explained that while she is examining the teeth, she checks for infection or abscess and if a veterinarian is needed, she recommends it. She also said that some dogs do better than others. She works with each dog patiently, but some dogs just can’t relax enough to get the job done. 

After we got to know each other, she took each of us, one at a time, into a quiet room and sat with us on a pallet in the floor. The fairy opened her big black bag and set out a light, a CD player, a big blanket and dental tools.

She turned soft music on the CD player. Then she opened a bottle of sweet smelling oil. She said it was lavender. She rubbed some into our ears. It made me feel calm and a little sleepy, like when I lie in my bed under the window on a sunny day. Then she wrapped us in a soft blanket and laid us on our sides. 

She scrapped each tooth until the tarter was gone then polished them. That’s all there was to it. 

Each time a patient was finished, the tooth fairy sat down and wrote a report about the condition of the dog’s teeth, how it behaved during the cleaning and gave recommendations for the owner to follow to help keep the teeth clean and white.

Phoebe JoAnn and Hotei got a better report on behavior than I did, but I can’t let that dampen my confidence.

Watch for my pearly whites again soon on BubbleLife. Until then; my wish for you? A sweet happy life. 

Wheels is a five-year-old Boston terrier from Grant’s Pass, Oregon. He trained and worked hard with his owner to achieve his AKC championship in conformation. His registered name is Ch. Sunglo’s Cruisin’ in a Tuxedo.