Our Bitesize Guide To Protecting Pets' Teeth
Looking after your pet’s pearly whites is extremely important. Dental disease among cats, dogs and rabbits is one of the most common problems we deal with at AAS Vets and there are some simple steps all pet owners can take to improve their furry friend’s oral health.
Going the extra smile - we’re offering up to £100 off dental treatments until 15th September 2019. Request a free dental check with the form below.
What problems can bad oral health cause?
Unfortunately, dental disease is extremely common in pets due to a combination of dietary and genetic factors. Here are some of the problems a bad oral health regime can cause:
- Without daily brushing, plaque can build up on animals’ teeth. This contains a complex film of bacteria which can be damaging to gums and roots
- If plaque isn’t removed it can build up and become calcified.
- The brown substance which can be seen on teeth is tartar, which can allow more bacteria to grow if left untreated.
- Not treating plaque and tartar can eventually lead to toothache, gingivitis (gum infection) and tooth loss. All these conditions can be very painful and you may see your pet having difficulties eating.
- Seemingly harmless items which pets chew on, such as tennis balls, can wear teeth down and leave the root exposed.
What action should I take?
By following a few simple steps you may be able to save pounds on the cost of dental maintenance for your pet:
- Regular proactive dental care can help prevent oral health issues. Daily brushing with pet-friendly toothpaste will help reduce the build-up of plaque.
- Prescription dental diets can be used to help prevent plaque build-up and keep teeth clean.
- For cats and dogs where tartar is already present, a scale and polish under a general anaesthetic is needed to remove the build-up.
An annual dental check with your vet is recommended once a year. Dogs and cats accumulate plaque and tarter at different rates and your pet's teeth may need cleaning more or less often. This is to stave off plaque and tartar that can lead to gum inflammation, periodontal disease and even tooth loss.
What could be involved in a dental cleaning treatment?
In most cases, it costs more to have your pet's teeth cleaned than your own. This is due to anaesthesia. Whilst most people will sit calmly and cooperate - the same can't be said about your four-legged friend. To save your pet from distress and the vet from being bitten, animals are typically put under anaesthesia for a dental cleaning.
- Pre-cleaning blood work: Older pets in questionable health may need pre-procedure blood work to ensure their kidneys and liver can process the anaesthesia.
- Anaesthesia: In order to safely and comfortably clean a dog's teeth, they'll need to be put under anaesthesia.
- IV drip: Not used in all cases, an IV drip can help your pet stay hydrated and maintain their blood pressure during anesthetic.
- Post-cleaning medication: We may prescribe antibiotics or other medication for you to take home to treat dental infections if the plaque and tarter on the teeth were particularly bad, and the patient has infected gums (gingivitis).
- Dental toothpastes: We may also recommend dental toothpastes to keep your pets teeth clean to prevent the requirement to perform dentals in future.
To help you get started on the road to better dental care for your pet, we’re offering up to £100 off dental treatments until 15th September 2019. Please click here for terms & conditions.
Please click here for terms & conditions.