HAVE YOUR PET’S TEETH & GUMS EXAMINED & TREATED ANNUALLY TO INSURE OPTIMUM PET DENTAL HEALTH
Early each year and specifically February we begin to communicate the value of dental health to the overall health status of your pets. So, don’t turn your nose to Fido’s or Fluffy’s bad breath!
That odor might signify a serious health risk, with the potential to damage not only your pet’s teeth and gums but its internal organs as well.
Periodontal disease is the most common clinical condition in cats and dogs even though it’s completely preventable. Checkout this video to more fully understand pet dental disease (known as Periodontal Disease) and how we can prevent your pets from getting it. Click Here to view a pet dental video.
While February is National Pet Dental Health Month, dental health should be a daily ritual for your pets all year long.
What are the clinical signs of dental disease?
There are a number of signs that should alert you to dental disease or other mouth problems in your dog or cat. Your pet may show a decreased interest in food or approach the food bowl and then show a reluctance to eat.
It may chew with obvious caution and discomfort, drop food from the mouth, or may swallow with difficulty. Dribbling may be seen, possibly with blood, and there may be a marked unpleasant odor to the breath. In some cases pets may be seen pawing at their mouths or shaking their heads. A reluctance to eat may lead to weight loss, which can become quite marked.
Some pets (especially cats) will refuse dry food and demonstrate a preference for moist or canned foods. Dental disease and oral pain may account for the ”finicky appetites” that many cats display.
What causes dental disease?
The most common cause of dental disease in dogs & cats is due to tartar and calculus accumulation. As in humans, pets accumulate bacterial plaque on the surface of their teeth. If the plaque is not removed quickly, it becomes mineralized to form tartar and calculus. The bacterial products and decaying food stuck to tartar are one potential cause of bad breath.
Tartar is easily identified by its tan or brown color. It normally starts at the gum edge, especially on the back teeth called the premolars and molars. In severe cases, tartar and calculus may cover the entire tooth.
Once periodontal disease starts, the degenerative changes to the tooth and its support structures cannot be reversed. These changes also make it easier for more plaque and tartar to collect, resulting in further disease. So, schedule your appointment today for your pet’s annual dental examination & treatment.