I didn't succeed with setting up a tooth-cleaning routine for Penny, even though I'd bought the toothpaste and the finger-toothbrush. I think I just wasn't prepared to put the work in. (I've still got all the equipment, though, so I can always try again another time.)
So, today I remembered I'd better buy Penny some meaty meals that would get her teeth working. I bought a few brisket bones, because a friend told me they are softer than most bones, and my butcher had confirmed this (sort of). I also bought a rabbit - fresh, not frozen - and the butcher cut it into six pieces.
She had a look at the rabbit in her bowl and decided it wasn't too appetising, but she took the brisket bone and ate it up in twenty-five minutes of hard chewing. So I guess that was successful as a tooth-cleaning exercise. Not all that successful as a meal, in my opinion, because it did look fatty and there wasn't much meat on it.
But the rabbit was still waiting on the eating mat, where Penny had dropped it. And she wasn't interested in it.
Until I picked up a plastic bag. Who says dogs don't have good memories? Months ago, if not years ago, when Penny left a piece of rabbit on her mat, I picked it up with my hand in a plastic bag and popped it back into the fridge to keep cool (in her special drawer in the fridge, away from our food). So this time, when she heard the rattle of the plastic, she leapt to grab her unwanted rabbit and hurried out through the doggy door to bury it.
Of course she buried it right under a precious plant. Doesn't she always? Let's hope that if she forgets it, the thornless blackberry likes a bit of meat around its roots.
The dirt or the rabbit must have tasted okay, because she was licking her soil-encrusted mouth as she hurried back inside to check whether something tastier might have appeared in her bowl. (It hadn't.)
PS. I researching this article, I came across an interesting post about feeding bones to dogs. The writer says that we should take out the thin bone in chicken thighs, because it is very sharp. I had already come to the conclusion that the thigh is the only part of the chicken carcass that I don't think is safe for Penny to eat.