Dental disease in our pets can be very deceiving. Other than bad breath, there are few signs of periodontal disease evident to pet owners. Many of our pets do not show any indication of dental pain and will continue to eat and act normally with a mouth full of infection. So how do you know when your pet is in need of dental treatment? Firstly, studies now indicate that 80% of pets over the age of two years have some form of dental disease. Since there is a wide range in the appearance and severity of periodontal disease, it is important that your pet be evaluated by a veterinarian to determine what prevention and/or care is needed.
So, you’re thinking to yourself, “I’ve looked in my dog’s mouth and the teeth look pretty clean to me.” Here is where “seeing is not always believing”! Not only is the majority of dental disease present underneath the gum-line, 60% of the tooth is hidden under that gum. Just think of teeth like an iceberg, what you see above the surface is just a hint of what lies below. With this in mind, it is important to realize that general anesthesia is paramount in performing a thorough dental evaluation. During this procedure, we perform a thorough examination of the teeth, gums, cheeks, tongue and bone structures looking for damage, swellings, growths and malocclusions. Abnormalities such as fractures, root exposure, tartar as well as gingival pockets are recorded on a dental chart. Full mouth dental radiographs are then taken to properly evaluate the tooth roots and the structures surrounding the teeth. With this information, our veterinarian can properly determine the best dental treatments needed to improve your pet’s overall health.
Since not every pet is the same and not every owner is the same, a treatment plan, as well as homecare dental prevention plan, is individually customized to you and your pet. Our healthcare team will present treatment options, the cost of the specific treatments and discuss various methods of home oral hygiene for your pet.
Don’t know where to start? Come in for a free dental assessment and receive a free dental kit to get started