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Does Orapup really fight dog breath?
My dog Lulu and I put Orapup to the test.
At the mere sight of her toothbrush, my Lulu delivers an Oscar-worthy performance. First, she stares forlornly at the object of her loathing. Then Lulu manages a deep, mournful sigh before trudging forward to suffer a fate that’s (almost) as bad as bath time. Call me a sucker. I typically put this little whine and dance off as long as possible. Perhaps that’s why Orapup intrigued me.
The paddle-shaped dog breath brush features soft, flexible bristles designed to remove bacteria that accumulates on the tongue, turning dog breath into a distant memory. Flavored gels (“Lickies”) are supposed to keep dogs enticed long enough for a thorough cleaning and enzymes keep the bad bacteria under control. My Lulu enjoys licking anything and anybody, so I decided to give Orapup a try. By the time an Orabrush rep asked me to consider a product review, I already had ordered a kit though Amazon.*
Does the Orapup really fight bad breath? Check out our Orapup product review to find out.
Orapup product review: First look
When Orapup debuted on February 25, the company already had sold more than $750,000 brushes, thanks to a quirky Youtube marketing campaign and loyal fans of the company’s original Orabrush tongue cleaner. The pet version has a longer surface area and angled handle. Made in the U.S.A., it’s available in five colors: black, blue, green, orange and pink. Our $20 starter kit included a blue Orapup brush and a 2-ounce bottle of beef- and bacon-flavored Lickies gel good for about 30 uses. Read more about the company’s amazing story on MNN.com.
As part of a promotional campaign, start kits also include two Orabrushes for humans. Additional options include a $33 kit, which contains two Orapups, two Lickies and four Orabrushes; and a $60 kit that contains an Orapup, a 2-ounce bottle of Lickies, a dog hoodie and two Orabrushes. The beef and bacon-flavored Lickies we tested contains water, brown rice syrup, beef and bacon flavor, grapefruit seed extract, grape seed extract, peptizyme and papain enzymes as well as preservatives sodium benzoate and potassium sorbate. Shipping for within the United States is free through Amazon.com.
Orapup instructions indicate that a half-teaspoon of Lickies will do the trick. The Lickies smells and tastes like concentrated beef broth (the things I do for my pet family!). It certainly was enough to pique Lulu’s interest. I squeezed Lickies onto the brush surface and let Lulu go to work. She quickly got busy licking the surface area, even after the gel was gone.
At about four inches long and 2.5 inches wide, the brush area accommodates dainty pooches as well as your power lickers. The angled handle is comfortable and easy to turn as needed. Once the gel was gone, I let Lulu have a few more licks before rinsing the Orapup. Her tongue was noticeably cleaner and Lulu’s breath had a faint aroma of beef, which I certainly prefer to dog breath. It fades quickly and what’s left is more neutral. The next day, her tongue was still clean and there was no dog breath. With regular use, about twice a week, I noticed that there really was no issue with her breath.
I also like knowing that the product was made in the United States.
So what’s the bad news?
Be careful while holding the Orapup. Lickies gel tends to drip, and it’s pretty sticky so it helps to have a wet tissue handy for cleanup. I recommend turning the brush a few times to make sure you get maximum coverage area on your dog’s tongue.
Although the 2-ounce bottle indicates that I can get 30 uses, Orapup’s website says that there are only 20 uses per bottle. Beef and bacon refills cost $7.50, the skin and coat version (cinnamon potpie) is $8.50, and the joint health refills cost $10. But that’s capitalism at its best, right?
3 out of 4 paws. While Orapup does improve a dog’s breath, Lulu and I still have our date with the toothbrush. As the company points out on its package, it is does not replace regular brushing or veterinary dental cleanings. Once plaque accumulates and turns to tartar, only a professional cleaning will work. Also, some cases of bad breath involve gum disease or tooth decay, which can lead to costly vet bills.
Consider the Orapup a preventive step that can make dental care a little more tolerable. I found that starting with the dreaded toothbrush and ending with the Orapup has made a big difference.
Have you tried the Orapup? Share your experience in the comments section. Also, follow Morieka on Twitter @SoulPup.
* Whenever possible, I purchase items tested on this site. Products given to SoulPup.com for review are donated to charity. The unused Orapup will be donated to a fundraiser for Lifeline Animal Project in Georgia.