We all have a choice regarding our teeth. While none of us enjoy going to the dentist, all of us at least have that option. Unfortunately, our fuzzy friends must depend on us to make that decision for them. Many of us disregard our pets dental needs, not because we don't care, but simply because we are not aware of the options.
The pictures above are before and after pictures of pets that have have their teeth professionally cleaned by our doctors and staff. The benefits are rewarding to both the pet and their owners.
Ask yourself these simple questions:
- Does your dog's breath knock your socks off?
- Does kitty drop her food periodically when she eats?
- Does your black Lab's tooth color match his hair color?
- Have you ever wondered why there is blood on your pet's toys or food?
If you answered "Yes" to one or more of these questions, Your pet may be having some discomfort and need to be evaluated by his dentist - his veterinarian.
Now let's talk dental disease. Did you know that dental disease is the leading health problem found in small animal hospitals. Without routine dental care, 80% of dogs and 70% of cats will show signs of oral problems by age three. If left untreated, this problem can be fatal.
Dental disease progresses in several stages:
Stage 1: Plaque: This is the white slippery film of food, bacteria, and enzymes found on the tooth. The film traps the debris underneath and forms tartar.
Stage 2: Tartar (Calculus): This is the second stage of dental disease. What happens is plaque mineralizes on the teeth and begins to harden. Once tartar forms on the tooth, the gingival tissues become damaged and dental disease progress to stage three.
Stage 3: Gingivitis: The word gingivitis means inflammation of the gums. The gums swell and bleed easily during this stage. Once bleeding begins, bacteria that is in the mouth enters the bloodstream and begins attacking the animals major organs. Unfortunately, the organs that are affected are the important ones that rely heavily on bloodflow. Such as the heart, lungs, liver, kidneys and in more severe cases the nervous system.
Stage 4: Periodontal Disease: Once gingivitis occurs, the gums begin to pull away from the tooth and the root becomes exposed. The tissue around the root is called "periodontal tissues" and the root exposure pocket is called the "periodontal pocket." The word periodontal comes from two greek words meaning "around the tooth." Periodontal disease develops once the gums receed, periodontal tissues are destroyed and the root eventually becomes exposed. In more severe cases of periodontal disease the pet's tooth falls out because the root has nothing to hold on to.
Ways to prevent Dental Disease:
- routine professional dental examinations
- home dental care (brushing, oral rinses, feed hard food)
- home dental examinations
- professional dental scale and polish when needed
Warning signs of Dental Disease:
- red or swollen gums near the gumliine
- discoloration of crusty tartar on the teeth
- bleeding gums
- drops food during meals
- excessive salivation
- decrease in appetite
- terrible mouth odor
- lethargic or continually fatigued
- tender when touched near the mouth
- weight loss
- paws at face due to discomfort
If you have a concern about your pet's oral health, call today to schedule a free consultation with our technician. Our educated staff will get your pet's mouth on the road to recovery.
For more information regarding your pet's dental needs visit www.cetdental.com. If you see any dental products on this website that interest you, call our hospital. We will special order it for you if we don't already have it!
Another valuable website is... www.PetDental.com