Dental care is very important for your furry friends. Neglecting their oral health can affect their overall well-being. The American Veterinary Dental Society reports that 80% of dogs and 70% of cats suffer from gum disease by the age of three. Gum disease is the Number One illness seen in cats and dogs. For this reason our veterinarians recommend routine dental work and proper dental care at home. Your pet should have a dental assessment at least once every year.
What is gum disease in pets?
Gum disease is also known as periodontal disease. When your pet eats food there are some bacteria that are left in their mouth. The bacteria combined with saliva and food particles form plaque to cover your pet’s teeth. If the plaque is not brushed away, the bacteria multiplies. Enzymes are released to fight off the bacteria but they also break down gum tissue. This leaves your furry friend with bleeding or inflamed gums. The gums may also start to recede and can result in tooth loss.
What are signs that my pet may have gum disease?
- Red/swollen or bleeding gums
- Bad breath
- Loose teeth
- Chewing on one side of the mouth
What dental services does your hospital offer?
Our hospital performs a complete dental workup each time your furry pal comes in for dental services. Our veterinarians do a full dental assessment, get digital X-rays of the teeth and do a full scale and polish. We also offer a complimentary tooth assessment if your pet has been seen by a veterinarian within the last year. With dental X-rays, we are able to see below the gum line and through the bone. This means we can see tooth root abscesses or damage at the root which allows us to diagnose the dental disease early and do extractions before causing permanent damage to the jaw bone. To learn more about our dental services, book an appointment at 250.724.4444.
How can I improve my pet’s oral health?
- Brush their teeth daily. Regular brushing prevents tartar buildup and gum disease. Our veterinarians can demonstrate how to safely brush your pet’s teeth. You can also ask us to recommend a brand of toothpaste or toothbrush for your furry pal.
- Take your pet to see a veterinarian for a dental assessment once every year. This prevents buildup on their teeth and catches tooth root problems.
- Give your pet food or supplements that clean their teeth while they chew. If you’re unsure what foods to purchase, ask our team for recommendations.
- Provide toys or treats that are gentle on their teeth. You should avoid hard toys like tennis balls, cow hooves, and real bones as they may damage their teeth.