Dental Disease Can Cause Serious Health Problems in Your Pet

Periodontal disease is the number one dental problem of dogs and cats, yet we often overlook the need for pet dental care. Cats and dogs, just like humans, can have gum disease, plaque and bacteria. Eighty-five percent of dogs over 3 years of age and seventy-five percent of cats over 3 years of age have periodontal disease.

This can lead to bad breath, oral discomfort and tooth loss. But did you also know that the bacteria that cause periodontal disease can enter the blood stream and invade the major organs such as lungs, kidneys, liver or heart, resulting in serious or even life threatening disease to your pet?

The Good News is Prevention

A regular veterinary dental checkup can help prevent severe problems and keep your pet healthy. Dental cleaning and prophylaxis is recommended on a regular basis. When the dental procedure at the veterinary hospital is completed, it will leave your pet's mouth bright, clean and smelling fresh.

Plaque is 80% living bacteria. Once that bacteria-filled plaque is removed, a proper dental health program at home is recommended. This may include brushing your pet's teeth at regular intervals as recommended by your veterinarian. Always use the toothbrush and flavored toothpaste that the veterinarian recommends. (Never use toothpaste made for humans as it may contain ingredients not safe for your pet.) Brushing only takes a few minutes, and your pet will consider the toothpaste a treat!

Is Anesthesia Necessary?

We follow procedures that minimize risk to your pets because our hospital subscribes to the highest standards of medical care. A thorough teeth cleaning requires special instruments that spray water, make noise and vibrate, which could send even the most obedient pet running for cover.

Anesthesia helps to keep your pet still and avoid injury during this procedure. To ensure the highest level of safety possible, a blood test is performed prior to the procedure to make sure all the major organs are functioning normally. A very safe anesthetic that is also used in human medicine is applied and your pet is closely monitored throughout the procedure.

Remember that dental disease can be a far greater risk to your pet's health than anesthesia.

Be on the Watch for Signs of Periodontal Disease:

Constant bad breath
Broken, loose or loss of teeth
Swollen, red or bleeding gums
Yellow/brown-colored teeth
Pus between gums & teeth
Receding gums
Unwillingness to drink cold water or play with chew toys

We're Here to Help!

We understand that you may have concerns and questions about dental exams and procedures. Our top priority is keeping your pet healthy and happy. Please don't hesitate to give us a call to discuss any topic of concern regarding your special companion.