Pet Dental Health Is Important to Well-being of Your Dog Or Cat
Pet dental disease is a serious and life-threatening problem, affecting as many as 95% of all dogs and cats. Dental disease can range from a serious build-up of plaque on the teeth to periodontal disease, an infection in the gums with loss of supporting bone around the teeth. In addition, dental disease can seed the bloodstream with infection, impacting vital organs such as the heart, lungs, liver, and kidneys.
Three Steps to Pet Dental Disease Prevention
So, how do we protect our pets from this painful and costly problem? The answer is really quite simple: a three-step process for disease prevention and dental health maintenance.
- Regular veterinary exams—As part of your routine wellness care, our veterinarian will look at your pet’s mouth, teeth, and gums to determine if there are any obvious problems; routine lab work may also reveal a hidden infection or other related health issue.
- Annual teeth cleaning—Under anesthesia, our veterinarian can thoroughly examine the mouth for developing problems, remove plaque and tartar both above and below the gum line, and polish the tooth enamel; digital dental X-rays help to reveal problems occurring deep in the tooth or surrounding area.
- Home dental care—Our veterinary professionals will assist you in developing a home dental hygiene routine to maintain clean teeth and promote healthy gums; a diet of good quality pet food and chew treats are a positive addition to your home care plan.
Treating existing dental disease can be both costly and traumatic for your pet. Prevention of pet dental disease is a more beneficial course of action and offers both pet and owner positive grooming and hygiene time together. If done properly, a home dental care regime provides an enjoyable experience that cements the human–animal bond.
The Pet Health Center at WebMD offers wonderful guides to maintaining your pet’s dental health: