MURPHYSBORO, IL (KFVS) - You love your dog, but sometimes when your dog loves you back – you get a whiff of hair-raising halitosis. A product called Pooch Smooch claims it can lick bad breath by simply giving your dog a treat, but does it work?
We asked events coordinator Amy Straub with St. Francis C.A.R.E. in Murphysboro, Illinois to put Pooch Smooch to the test.
Straub said she wants to love on all the pets in the no-kill shelter, but the sad truth is some dogs are more pleasant to love on than others.
"They get close and you're like 'Oh wow, what's the smell?' Then you think maybe not so close, maybe we'll love from a distance," said Straub.
A one-year-old German Shepard mix named Lucky is on the "love from a distance" list. Lucky has beautiful blue eyes, but very bad breath.
The makers of Pooch Smooch claim their product can eliminate bad breath on any size dog. The Pooch Smooch sells for $20 at Dollar General and includes one Pooch Smooch Brush and two packages of flavored Pooch Paste.
The directions say to apply two inches of Pooch Paste to the Pooch Smooch brush and let your dog lick the brush. The product's premise is that by licking the Pooch Smooch brush, your dog removes bad breath causing bacteria through the use of 1,500 bristles and four scrapers.
Straub is excited about the prospect of fresher breath for Lucky who is still searching for his forever home.
"Maybe that's what's warding people off," said Straub.
The test box of Pooch Paste contained two Pooch Paste packets: peanut butter flavor, and chicken flavor.
We apply two inches of peanut butter Pooch Paste to the Pooch Smooch brush, but Lucky didn't pucker up.
After several tries and a lot of encouragement we have only a few licks and some big time bad breath still lingering.
"No – we're not having it," said Straub.
We opt to switch the Pooch Paste to chicken flavor in the hopes Lucky prefers that flavor over peanut butter. Still, Lucky wasn't biting.
With a shelter full of dogs, most of whom have bad breath, Straub suggests switching to a more treat-motivated dog like Buster the beagle.
"He's always ready for a snack from anybody," said Straub.
We rinsed off the Pooch Smooch brush and applied more peanut butter pooch paste to see if Buster liked the product.
Buster didn't seem to be a fan of the peanut butter and turned his nose up at the Pooch Smooch.
We switched to chicken Pooch Paste and that seemed to pique Buster's interest, but not for long.
Buster lost interest after five or so licks and we had to apply more pooch paste.
"He doesn't want to work for it," said Straub.
But does the product work? There was only one way to find out. Straub had to do the sniff test.
"It kind of smells like chicken," said Straub. "It's masking everything else though - all the bad breath just smells like chicken."
Buster didn't seem to fall in love with Pooch Smooch, but Straub said the product did seem to freshen up his kisser.
Straub gives Pooch Smooch 3 stars on this Does It Work test.
Our tester said Pooch Smooch might be worth the $20 price tag if your dog is very treat motivated and has very bad breath.
The Pooch Smooch packaging says the two Pooch Paste packets are a month's supply. We had to apply more paste than recommended to just get our testers interested so the two-pouch supply might not last a month.