Preventive Dental Care
Routine dental care matters.
A pet's dental health is just as important as their physical health, however, it often goes overlooked. The reality is that oral hygiene plays a huge part in ensuring your pet lives a long, healthy life.
Dental disease is a common but serious problem. Approximately 80% of pets will develop it by the time they’re three and, if left untreated, it will spread to the tooth socket and destroy bone. It also allows bacteria to travel from the mouth and through the body which can affect the heart, lungs, kidneys, and liver and cause chronic health issues.
The good news is that dental disease is entirely preventable and with regular preventive care, you can help your pet avoid the pitfalls associated with poor oral hygiene.
Stages of Dental Disease
- Stage 1 Dental Disease:
- Early Gingivitis, Inflammation at the gumline, redness and plaque accumulation
- Stage 2 Dental Disease:
- Advanced Gingivitis, Bleeding on probing, Tartar (mineralization of plaque), Bad Breath
- Stage 3 Dental Disease:
- Early Periodontitis, Pustular Discharge, Slight to moderate bone loss
- Stage 4 Dental Disease:
- Advanced Periodontitis, Deep pockets of infection, Severe bone loss
How can I help my pet maintain good oral hygiene?
The best way to make sure your pet’s teeth remain healthy is by having routine annual exams. Whether you have a puppy or kitten with a mouth full of baby teeth or an adult pet whose teeth need to be checked for plaque, tartar, or dental disease, having a veterinarian examine them is the first step to making sure they’re in good health.
During your pet’s comprehensive physical, your veterinarian will perform a dental health assessment and make recommendations for preventive care. Sometimes this will mean performing good home preventative care, other times, it will mean scheduling an appointment for a dental cleaning or extraction.
Although we recommend brushing your pet’s teeth daily as part of a good preventive care routine, we understand that it’s not always possible. Luckily, there are other ways to maintain your pet’s oral health when you can’t brush their teeth.
- Utilize water additives
- Give your pet a dental chew every other day
- Choose food and treats that control plaque and promote dental health
- Schedule dental cleanings as recommended by your veterinarian
Call us at (630) 232-8868 to schedule your pet’s oral health assessment or dental cleaning.