Petlab Co. Dental Formula Review - How Well Does It Work?
Petlab Co. Dental Formula is a liquid dental wash you put in your dog’s water to improve his or her dental health through a combination of ingredients.
The product is one of several that Petlab sells, all of which focus on pet health. The company claims all its products are made in the United States and come with a 90-day money-back guarantee.
In our review of Petlab Co’s dental wash, we’ll examine how to use it, what its ingredients are and what they do, potential side effects and any evidence supporting the effectiveness of dental washes for your pup’s dental health.
We’ll include a few quick comparisons between this product and other dental washes that receive excellent reviews from Petco.
Pro tip: Petlab’s branding of this product focuses on dogs but they say it’s safe for cats, too.
The company directs you to use 1 teaspoon of their dental wash per 8 ounces of water once a day for your dogs. If you use one teaspoon a day, you should be able to get 48 teaspoons out of each 8-ounce dental wash bottle.
This dental product uses three main ingredients: sodium bicarbonate, potassium sorbate and sodium benzoate. The product’s main ingredient is purified water, and it also includes stabilized chlorine dioxide, tetrasodium EDTA and methyl paraben.
The three main products work together to protect your dog’s teeth and gums from plaque, which can lead to periodontal disease. The America Kennel Club notes that periodontal disease is the “most common clinical condition” seen in adult dogs. The dental wash also freshens your dog’s breath, the company claims.
The company also says that their dental wash can ward off microbial germs that can work their way into your dog’s gums. The wash does this through EDTA.
While there isn’t much research about this product as it relates to dogs, we did manage to find one study that addresses it. That study indicates that EDTA acts as a protective barrier in dogs’ ears. In human uses, the ingredient puts a protective film over the teeth and protects them from germs, the study noted.
So, we believe there’s some loose evidence indicating EDTA could protect your dog’s teeth but we don’t believe the evidence is conclusive.
While I don’t have any experience using Petlab Co.’s dental wash, I can attest to the effectiveness of dental washes in freshening your pup’s breath. I bought one from Target and used it on my foul-mouthed terrier, whose breath freshened with a few days of giving him a daily dose of dental wash.
That being said, the research we’ve done indicates there are differing opinions about how effective dental washes are in improving your dog’s dental health.
For example, Danielle Mühlenberg, founder of dog training and behavior blog Pawleaks, said that dental washes can be effective.
“Dental washes do help with keeping a pet’s mouth clean,” she said. “They soften tartar and get rid of any plaque on the teeth to promote healthy gums. Oral ailments like gingivitis can be prevented and the breath kept fresh.”
Dr. Sara Ochoa, a veterinarian and consultant for DogLab.com, told us that dental washes are effective to a certain extent.
“They help if your dog does not already have tons of heavy tartar build-up on their teeth. For dogs will very bad dental disease they will need a dental cleaning done at the vet’s office just like people get,” Ochoa said.
However, Joseph Braha, CEO of online pet-product marketplace Pet Life, told us that pastes and gels are far more effective in helping with your dog’s dental health.
“Most of the dental washes have been saturated with water. Most of the dental washes have been saturated with water,” Braha told us. “These water additives are not as effective as they claim they are. Most of them are very diluted with water.”
As an alternative, Braha told us that dog owners should consider pastes, gels and dental chews.
“Dental chews get into the teeth a lot better. And, anything that’s a gel (or paste) is more highly concentrated because it’s not diluted in water,” he said.
Customers on his site prefer gels, pastes and dental chews to dental washes, too. As for brands he recommends based on what sells best on his site and what his customers like, TropiClean is the favorite, he said.
We’ll mention this brand’s dental wash in our comparison section later in this review. For now, we want to address the possible side effects of using a dental wash.
There are specific side effects your dog may encounter when using a dental wash. For example, Mühlenberg pointed out that you have to keep a close eye on your dog the first time you use the dental wash.
“If any mouthwash is tried for the first time, start with small amounts and look out for any bad reactions,” she said. “Side effects may include: mouth irritation, nausea, dry mouth, appetite loss and vomiting. Severe cases can lead to liver and kidney failure but that would be pretty rare.”
Ochoa said that some pets “may vomit after using the pet dental washes” and that, if your pet does, you should stop using them and talk with your vet about a recommendation for an alternative.
Xylitol is a common ingredient in dental washes that is often cited as a danger. However, Petlab’s dental wash does not use xylitol.
At the time of publishing, you could buy the company’s dental wash at two price groups: one-time and subscription.
- One bottle: $42.29
- Two bottles: $65.82
- Three bottles: $95.24
- Four bottles: $127.00
- One bottle: $33.83
- Two bottles: $52.66
- Three bottles: $76.19
- Four bottles: $101.60
The key difference here is that subscription purchases are cheaper but they require you to sign up for recurring shipments that charge your card automatically. Petlab gives you the choice to sign up for their subscription and how often you get the product; they don’t automatically enroll you.
All orders ship free.
As we mentioned in our introduction, all Petlab products have a 90-day, money-back guarantee. If you aren’t happy with the product, you can contact the company’s support desk to process your return. Their number is (941)217-1546 and their email address is email@example.com.
If your bottles of dental wash arrived damage, you need to notify Petlabs within 14 days of receiving the damaged products.
One of the best ways to understand the value you’re getting with a particular pet product is to see what competing companies charge for similar products, as well as the online feedback they get from users.
Earlier we mentioned that TropiClean is a popular brand among dental washes. We went to Chewy.com, a popular online pet-product marketplace, to find out what customers were saying about TropiClean Fresh Breath Water Additive. The product has more than 400 reviews, an average rating of 4.4 stars and 91% of reviewers would recommend it.
The product includes sodium benzoate but has a few other ingredients that are different than what the dental wash from Petlab has. Another big difference is the price of the two products.
If you buy a single bottle of Petlab Dental Wash without a subscription, you will pay $42.29 for 48 servings, which is about $0.88 per serving. TropiClean Fresh Breath Water Additive is $9.99 for 32 servings, or $0.31 per serving.
Another popular product on Chewy.com is Dental Fresh Advanced Plaque & Tartar Water Additive for Dogs. This product has more than 200 reviews, an average rating of 4.3 stars and 89% of reviews recommend the product.
It includes the same exact ingredients as Petlab’s dental wash and is also made in the United States. It costs $6.99 for an 8-ounce bottle. Like Petlab’s dental wash, it has 48 servings in an 8-ounce bottle, which works out to $0.14 per serving.
Based on the information we gathered in these comparisons, we believe that customers are very happy with products similar to Petlab’s dental wash but at a fraction of the price.
Based on our research of this product, we think there are some clear strengths and weaknesses that you need to consider as you make your next dental wash purchase.
First, Petlab Co. Uses ingredients that are common among dental washes. This is a good sign, because it means you aren’t getting a product that claims to provide manifold benefits but doesn’t have the ingredients to back up those claims.
Second, dental washes, in general, can provide legitimate benefits to your pet. As I pointed out earlier, I used a dental wash on my dog and his breath became noticeably more tolerant after a few days. Our experts confirmed this, too.
So, we think that Petlab Co. Dental Formula is well within the realm of mainstream dental washes that provide observable benefits.
The main drawback, though, is that Petlab charges a lot of money for their dental wash compared to other popular products. Its ingredients are exactly the same as the dental wash from Dental Fresh, yet it costs about seven times more per serving.
There is nothing we read on Petlab’s website or heard from their customer service department that explains why their price is so high. Nor did we hear back from them regarding their claims that their product is a best-seller and recommended by vets.
Because of this, we think you may be better off finding a dental wash like Dental Fresh that has numerous consumer reviews, a reasonable price and three ingredients shown to help fight bad breath, plaque and germs.