DIY Natural Fresh Breath Gel for Dogs

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This DIY natural fresh breath gel for dogs really works at freshening breath and helping to prevent tarter on dog's teeth. Plus it's completely natural!

Does your dog’s breath kill trees from a hundred paces? Then perhaps consider this DIY natural fresh breath gel for dogs.

Let me begin by stating I have a miniature dachshund. His name is Jasper. And like most dachshunds he has some of the worst breath ever. No, seriously. Ever. That said I’ve tried all kinds of things to freshen his breath including all those silly tooth brushing bones and minty dog treats. And while they might help keep tartar and plaque at bay, they seem to do absolutely nothing for the state of his breath.

Over Christmas my brother told me about a tartar control and fresh breath gel for dogs that he had been using. Not only did it work great on his dogs, but it also had neem oil as one of the ingredients. As neem oil was one of my favorite discoveries of the past year I decided I had to try this out. But instead of buying a gel tartar control and breath freshener I decided to try making something similar with ingredients I already have in my stash of soap making ingredients.

I looked at two popular products when trying to decide which natural ingredients to use. Tropiclean Fresh Breath Plaque Remover Pet Clean Teeth Gel is one such popular product. It’s made with Purified Water, Natural Derived Alcohol, Natural Mint, Glycerin, Natural Cleanser, Carbopol, Chlorophyllin, and Green Tea Leaf Extract. The other is Nutri-Vet’s Tartar-Defense Spray for Dogs which is made with Water, Grain Alcohol, Peppermint Oil, Grapefruit Seed Extract, Rosemary Oil, Thyme Oil, and Neem Oil.

This DIY natural fresh breath gel for dogs really works at freshening breath and helping to prevent tarter on dog's teeth. Plus it's completely natural!

For my DIY fresh breath gel for dogs I sort of combined select ingredients from both of these products. I was leery about using grain alcohol – aka moonshine – and water in my recipe as this was basically an “edible” product and I wasn’t entirely sure what to use an emulsifier to keep the oil and glycerin mixed with the alcohol without using propylene glycol. (I also wasn’t entirely sure about rubbing alcohol on my dog’s teeth.) So instead I simply used natural vegetable glycerin as the main base. This still encourages dogs to lick their teeth like the commercial brands to help prevent tarter. But as my main concern was fresh breath and getting my dog not to run and hide when I went to rub it on his teeth, I chose to use glycerin which makes for a sweet alcohol free base that can be easily administered.

I also used neem oil for it’s awesome anti-bacterial properties and essential oils for their anti-bacterial and breath freshening properties. Additionally my DIY fresh breath gel for dogs also incorporates liquid grapefruit seed extract for its antioxidant properties – an ingredient that Nutri-Vet states on their product helps to reduce inflammation – and grapeseed oil. There are a few easy substitutions you can make, however, if you don’t have a product on hand or for specific properties you’re after. For example, you could easily sub the grape seed oil – an edible oil which I chose for the pleasant flavor – with coconut oil which is used in the oil pulling method to remineralize and strengthen teeth. (I used refined coconut oil as it has a lower melt point than unrefined coconut oil.) You could also easily play around with the essential oils to see which ones work best for your dog’s breath and/or his taste buds.

This DIY natural fresh breath gel for dogs really works at freshening breath and helping to prevent tarter on dog's teeth. Plus it's completely natural!

Fresh Breath Gel for Dogs Recipe

© Rebecca’s Soap Delicatessen


1.6 oz. vegetable glycerin
.2 oz. liquid grapefruit seed extract
.2 oz. grapeseed oil (or refined coconut oil, melted)
6 drops 100% pure neem oil
1 drop rosemary essential oil
1 drop spearmint (or peppermint) essential oil


If you don’t have grapefruit seed extract you can substitute it with more of the grape seed oil or with refined coconut oil. You can also try using 1 drop rosemary eo, 1 drops peppermint eo and 1 drop thyme eo in lieu of 1 drop each of the rosemary and spearmint essential oils.

Using a digital kitchen scale weigh out the glycerin, grapefruit seed extract and grape seed oil into a small glass jar or bowl. Use a plastic transfer pipette or glass dropper to add the drops of neem oil and essential oils. (If your neem oil has solidified due to cold temperatures simply place the bottle into a bowl of hot water until it liquifies.) Mix with a utensil to combine.

Now use a funnel to combine in a 1 oz. amber glass bottle with a dropper. Shake well once more for final measure.

To use add a few drops of this fresh breath gel for dogs to your finger or a toothbrush and rub onto your dog’s teeth.

Click here for more recipes that use neem oil including homemade soaps, salves and creams. Or, for more home remedies and DIY ideas like this one be sure to follow my boards on Pinterest. You can also keep up with all of my new posts and recipes by following on Blog Lovin’ as well as on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

About Rebecca D. Dillon

Rebecca D. Dillon is a soapmaker, DIY-er and blogger whose life is controlled daily by a dachshund. You can learn more about Rebecca by checking out her bio. Or discover more great skin care & beauty recipes by subscribing to Soap Deli News blog via email.


  1. I’d be a little leery using grape seed oil at all considering grapes are a poison to dogs.

    • While the fruit of grapes is toxic to dogs, the oil and extract from grape seed is not. However, you are welcome to sub with your preferred carrier oil. (source here and from ASPCA here.) I definitely wouldn’t have tested this on my dog if I’d had doubts. He’s like my child.

  2. Oh my gosh, your Jasper has the most adorably sweet face! Since offering elk antlers to Sam, they have made a huge difference with both tartar control and breath. They come in different sizes, last forever, don’t smell or get mushy. But a few drops of this recipe might even be extra insurance for when we visit patients. Outstanding!

    • I’ve given Jasper elk antlers as well but he’s never as interested in those for very long. I do feed him Blue dog food though and I think it makes his breathe worse than the stuff with all the fillers in it. But his skin and coat do so much better on the good stuff.

      • I’m so glad I stumbled upon the elk antler conversation! I was giving my 2 year old lab (only 55 lbs!) antlers and she loved them and I took her in for a check-up and the vet told me she has a cracked tooth in the back. He asked about bones and I told him about the antlers and he said those crack teeth all the time. We are just keeping an eye on it now but it will eventually have to be pulled. I feel so bad for her!

        And my dogs are my children and we feed raw. Thanks for the great breath freshener recipe!

  3. Patricia Marsh says

    OMG…Jasper is ADORABLE!!!!!!!

  4. I’ve been told several times, through essential oil experts, DO NOT give dogs spearmint

    • I found the opposite. ” Veterinarians are skilled in the diagnosis of disease in animals and should always be consulted — especially in situations where symptoms are severe or persist. Always tell your veterinarian what natural products your pet is using and involve him or her in these decisions. The following oils can be used in first aid and are safe for short-term use: Spearmint: Helps to reduce weight. Good for colic, diarrhea, nausea. Helps balance metabolism, stimulates gallbladder. When diluted and used short term, this oil is helpful for many gastrointestinal issues in cats.” Source. I also chose eo’s that are currently being used in the same type of existing commercial products for dogs. If you have doubts, I’d consult your veterinarian.

  5. i’m so very curious to know the outcome of your trial with your got breath freshener Rebecca. You haven’t mentioned what changes you’ve seen and how well you think your product is working. Would you please speak about your results with your product?

  6. Jane milles says

    Make it and sell it please