Mouth Matters

dog cat toothbrushingThe health of your pet’s mouth matters. By the age of just three years, up to 70% of cats and 80% of dogs have signs of dental disease. An unhealthy mouth can cause bad breath, chronic pain, reduced quality of life, and can even lead to heart, kidney or liver disease.

Unfortunately pets can’t tell us that their teeth or mouth hurt. As a result, many cases of oral disease escape detection and pets suffer in silence. Very often the problem is advanced by the time we notice anything is wrong, and treatment becomes more difficult and costly.

Signs that your pet may have a problem and require a vet visit include bad breath, facial swellings, dribbling or drooling, having difficulty eating or going off their food, weight loss, pawing or rubbing their mouth, or lack of grooming. However, the presence of dental tartar and reddening of the gums with no other signs is enough to suggest that your pet may need a dental.

During a dental procedure, you pet is anaesthetised and an evaluation of their teeth and gums is performed, including radiographs of the tooth roots if indicated. Each tooth is then thoroughly cleaned above and below the gum line with a sonic scaler and polished to create a smooth surface that is more resistant to plaque build-up. Sometimes teeth need to be removed, or other oral issues may become evident at this stage.

Dental care is an important part of maintaining your pet’s overall good health and we are committed to helping you achieve the healthiest life possible for your furry friend. Regular dental checks can help make sure your pet’s mouth stays in excellent health. Your pet may need to be referred to a vet, or suitable at-home measures such as specialised dental diets, dental chews or toys, teeth brushing or additives for their drinking water may be recommended.

During August we’re focusing on your pet’s dental health, so give us a call to arrange an appointment for their free dental check with our Community Nurse!