Teeth are not just important for humans but our furry friends as well. They are easy to neglect if you’re not careful. November is National Dental Month, sponsored by the Canadian Medical Association and it’s important to pay attention to your pet’s dental health. If your pet has bad breath don’t just ignore it. It could be a sign of serious teeth or gum problem which can lead to expensive vet bills which neither you nor your pet want!
How Often Should You Be Brushing Your Pet’s Teeth?
You should brush your pet’s teeth at least once a week. Regularly brushing your pet’s teeth is the single most effective thing you can do at home between professional cleanings. In a perfect world, you would brush your pet’s teeth on a daily basis, but we know that isn’t always realistic. Just brushing a few times a week with a toothbrush and some enzymatic toothpaste can remove much of the tartar and plaque that forms on teeth. Not sure how to brush your pet’s teeth? Ask us the next time you’re in and we’ll show you how.
What percentage of dogs and cats will have some form of gum disease?
Amazingly, 80% of dogs and 70% of cats will have some form of gum disease or tooth decay by the time they are three years old. Gum disease includes gingivitis and loss of bone and soft tissue around the teeth. Early detection at your pet’s annual exams and regular cleanings are critical in preventing periodontal disease, mouth pain, and associated health problems. Bacteria in the mouth associated with periodontal disease can enter the bloodstream and be carried to other parts of the body, causing problems in and around the liver, kidneys, and heart.
When was the last time your pet had a dental checkup?
If it’s been over a year, contact us to schedule an exam with one of our veterinarians. At your pet’s bi-annual or annual exam, we will do a thorough examination of the entire body, including the mouth and gums. We will be able to see any plaque or tartar on the teeth.
If you’re concerned we can do a more thorough exam and x-rays may be needed to evaluate the health of the teeth roots and jaw below the gum line. We use general anesthesia to sedate the patient for this exam, taking x-rays, and the subsequent cleaning. Sedating the patient makes it possible for these procedures to be done with less stress and pain for your pet. With your pet sedated, we are able to get full-mouth radiographs very quickly with our new state-of-the-art digital x-ray machine and the best cleaning possible.
It’s important to have regular dental checkups and thorough cleanings by a veterinarian. We are able to get an accurate assessment of the health of your pet’s mouth and see if underlying dental disease exists.
If you would like to book an appointment you can get $50 off dental cleaning and a free small bag of dental formula. Contact us HERE