Aged garlic extract shows promise as gum disease treatment for dogs

garlic extract gum disease treatment  dogs

A research team from Japan has found that a compound of aged garlic extract (AGE) administered orally yields improvement without adverse effects in beagles with mild gingivitis. (It is important to note this does not mean WHOLE GARLIC.) Their study is published in Frontiers in Veterinary Science.

Seeking to build on earlier work showing that aged garlic extract did not produce adverse reactions in dogs, the researchers of this study sought to investigate whether it might also provide them a therapeutic benefit.

The team prepared an aged garlic extract powder by soaking slices of fresh garlic cloves in an ethanol and water mixture for 10 months and then drying it with a circulation dryer. 

Ten beagles with mild gingivitis but otherwise good general health (four males and six females ranging from 2 to 9 years old) formed the study population and were assigned to either the test or placebo group, each of which included two males and three females.

At baseline and again at four and eight weeks after treatment, the researchers measured the dogs’ gingival indices at 22 oral cavity sites; the average gingival index was less than 1. They also measured the volatile sulfur compounds (VSCs) in the dogs’ exhaled breath at baseline and at eight weeks after treatment. Feeding the dogs normally and providing water freely during the test period, they mixed either a low dose of the test powder (18 mg/kg/day) or the placebo powder into the dogs’ food once a day for eight weeks, confirming each time that the dogs finished the food completely.

Among the notable results, the gingival index scores among the test group subjects showed significant decreases at four and eight weeks, though among the placebo group they did not. VSCs measured with a halimeter were measurably higher in the placebo group at eight weeks, but showed no significant change in the test group.

Considering these findings along with their additional measurements of thiol levels, periodontal pathogenic enzyme activity, and concentrations of salivary IgA and CAMP, the researchers believe that aged garlic extract provides a therapeutic benefit in cases of canine gingivitis and halitosis, and that their results may support its use as a dietary supplement as both a prevention and a treatment for these conditions.


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