Pet Dental Disease: Not About the Cavities
Just like our mouths, companion animals have very important healthcare needs. Pet dental disease starts with plaque and bacteria on the surfaces of the teeth, but instead of leading to cavities (uncommon in dogs and cats), this buildup eventually leads to infection of the gums and jaw bones. This process can be stopped and reversed, but without proper dental care your pet can suffer from:
- Painful mouth and loss of appetite
- Bad breath
- Irritated or bleeding gums
- Loose or missing teeth
- Infections that spread to other areas of the body
Owners taking charge of pet’s dental care every day ensures they have a long, healthy life. Here are some specific ways to help your furry friends pass their check up:
Avoid Pet Dental Disease: Selecting a Pet Food
In general, dry kibble will do a better job of discouraging plaque build up than wet or freeze dried foods. Additionally there are some prescription diets (like Hill’s Prescription Diet t/d) and brands that can even help to remove plaque as your pet chews. Our doctors and technicians have received special training in nutrition and can recommend the best dental food for your pet, so please ask!
The pet food store is full of products that claim dental health benefits. While some are better than others, at Goldorado we highly recommend products that are approved by the Veterinary Oral Health Council such as Oravet Dental Hygiene Chews.
Daily brushing is the single most important step in keeping your pet’s mouth healthy. It may take some training and patience, but owners who do daily brushing for their pets will ensure that plaque is kept at bay. Don’t hesitate to ask one of our staff for a demonstration, we are happy to help! Using a toothbrush and a pet specific toothpaste if desired (never use human toothpaste!) gently scrub the surfaces of your pet’s teeth. Some of our clients have even trained their pets with mechanical toothbrushes!
A regular and thorough oral examination with Dr. Barnes or Dr. Prince will ensure that your pet’s mouth is in ideal condition. Besides dental disease there are many other problems that can arise such as broken teeth, tooth resorption, or even mouth cancers. How often a pet needs a teeth cleaning will depend on the individual, and the doctor will make personalized recommendations based on your pet’s needs.
When a problem is found we will recommend a more complete oral exam and cleaning under anesthesia, which includes dental radiographs in order to fully evaluate each tooth. We are proud to offer the highest quality of dental care and are sure that our experienced and compassionate team can help your pet’s mouth stay healthy and happy.
Dental Month – February!
Once a year we are happy to offer 15% all dental procedures for the entire month of February! If you have been putting off routine dental care or even if you are noticing bad breath from your pet, now is the perfect time to make an appointment.