How do Greenies Work?

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Though so many people praise Greenies, as dog owners, it’s difficult to feed your beloved companion whatever the Internet says is great. We like to understand how certain products work before we hand it off to our pets: how do Greenies work exactly?

So, how do Greenies work? Simply put, a Greenie is an edible toothbrush (hence the unique shape) made of digestible materials. Your dog would bite into the chewy treat as the dental health product scrapes away any plaques and residues on your dog’s teeth.


  • Contains one (1) 36 ounce 36-count pack of Greenies Original Regular Size Natural Dental Dog Treats; Natural Dog Treats Plus Vitamins, Minerals and Other Nutrients for medium dogs

Though the mechanics of the product is simple, there are other questions that need to be answered in order for you to understand Greenies: What are the benefits of this product? What are some dangers? Exactly why is it important to keep your dog’s teeth clean, and what happens if you don’t use dental products like Greenies?

How do Greenies Work: 2 Benefits

How do Greenies help dog's teeth?

1. Gum-Friendly

Gum health is one of the main selling points of the product. Because of how soft and chewy the treat is compared to other dog dental care products, it’s an effective toothbrush for your dog that makes sure your dog’s gums aren’t agitated. 

The average dental product for your dog is hard and brittle. Though it is effective in cleaning plaques and scraping off chunks of residues to avoid bacterial infections, these products exchange your dog’s dental sanitation for scratches and agitations along the gum line.

This is, in fact, quite counter-productive as the cuts in the gum would make the dog more prone to infections, which is exactly what we want to avoid!

Greenies tends to be safer than using traditional toothbrushes as well, as they might also be too rough for your dog’s soft gums.

Moreover, it’s difficult to figure out how much force you should be applying when you are brushing your dog’s teeth for it. You wouldn’t be sure if you did a good job of cleaning out your dog’s teeth!

The other aspect that is less convenient is how you’re forced to put yourself in a dangerous situation. Putting your hand in your dog’s mouth is never a good idea, especially for a prolonged amount of time. Use Greenies instead!

To rectify these common problems in damaging the gum, Greenies developed a solution that is effective in cleaning your dog’s teeth but also aware of how soft the gums are.

The sponge-like ingredients synthesized to create this product make sure that if the dog were to bite hard into the chewy treat, its gums would still be protected.

Moreover, as the dog’s teeth sink into the edges, the shape is morphed to better fit your dog’s teeth, allowing for a more pleasant cleaning experience for your dog.

2. Nutrition

Though Greenies isn’t like regular snacks that dogs are expected to gobble up in a few minutes, once your dog bites through the entire “toothbrush”, your dog can also gain nutritional benefits from these products. 

The official Greenies website highlights that, first and foremost, the product is very high in vitamins.

With different vitamin compounds such as:

  • Vitamin E
  • Vitamin B
  • Vitamin A
  • Vitamin D
  • Improved immune system

Moreover, vitamins contribute to energy production! With all the vitamins that are available in Greenies, your dog will be so much more active and energetic than usual. 

The product also focuses on delivering different types of minerals that canines require. The most notable minerals are zinc and iron (are two of the most important minerals for dogs).

Iron will help your dog’s cardiovascular system and, in turn, help it become active once again.

Zinc is super important when it comes to strengthening bones, which means the product helps your dog’s teeth not only by cleaning them but also supplying the minerals necessary to make them more durable. 

The other major component of Greenies is that it’s based on carbohydrates, more specifically wheat. Though carbs aren’t necessary for dogs, they can be very helpful when they’re consumed at the right amount.

And wouldn’t you know it: Greenies achieves the perfect balance in the carbohydrate department. With Greenies, you should be able to supply your dog with energy in case it’s been lethargic lately!

The final notable nutritional aspect of Greenies is how much fat is stored in these products.

Although excessive amounts of fat may cause other health problems, having the right amount, like Greenies does, will provide your dog with skin and hormone benefits. With this, your dog will feel lighter and more energized. 

All in all, Greenies provides a lot of nutritional value on top of its main purpose of cleaning out plaques. Most of them contribute to improving your dog’s overall energy, so there’s that for positive side effects!

How do Greenies Work: 2 Dangers to Watch Out For

1. Intestinal Blockage

Now, if you are familiar with the product, you might have also heard about the controversies, namely the ones that talk about how Greenies was the cause of intestinal blockages. 

Before going on to explain how this might have been, it’s worth noting that Greenies has stated that their product is 100% digestible.

Made mainly from carbohydrates, dogs shouldn’t have problems breaking them down unless their digestive system is very weak. If that’s the case, the owner should try to avoid providing their companions with chewy treats altogether. 

For this reason, those who claimed that Greenies was the cause of intestinal blockages most likely had dogs that chewed too little and swallowed the treat as soon as they ripped off a large portion.

As all dog foods go, it’s important that dogs don’t eat too quickly as no matter how strong a dog’s digestive system is, it has a limit as to how much food it can digest at once. Intestinal blockages could have occurred as the dog’s stomach wasn’t given enough time to break it down.

In order to avoid these problems, one solution is to supervise and watch your dog as it chews away at the treat. This way, you can stop your dog if it tries to swallow the treat immediately.

Another solution is to make sure that you are providing your dog with the appropriately-sized portions. By doing this, you can ensure that your dog won’t be gobbling Greenies up immediately!

2. Nutritional Balance

Having too much of anything, no matter how healthy it is, is never good. The same applies to Greenies.

The website highlights that only 1 Greenies should be enough for a dog as long as they are fed appropriately-sized treats because it might throw off the balance in nutrition.

For example, consuming too much of this dental product might lead to your dog eating excessive amounts of carbohydrates.

In this case, your dog might experience indigestion as they are anatomically not designed to digest such large amounts of carbohydrates. This is especially a threat for Greenies users as their products are largely based on wheat.

Add other dog kibbles/meals, your dog would already exceed the daily recommended amount of carbs.

However, this isn’t as large of a concern as eating too quickly or purchasing the wrong version of Greenies, as it would take a lot of this dental product to cause severe health issues from excessive use.

This is another example of why Greenies is perceived to be safer: it’s difficult to overeat them for dogs.

Related Questions

Could Greenies be a choking hazard?

Only if your dog is eating chunks that are too large for its own good. We recommend that you monitor them while eating and purchase the Greenies size that matches your dog’s size.

Are Greenies the best solution for dog dental care?

No. Greenies are effective for taking care of your dog’s teeth at home dog dental care, but the best solution is more than that. You can’t rely solely on Greenies. You should brush your dog’s teeth and regularly take him to the vet for dental checkups.

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