Dental Care for Dogs
At North Town Veterinary Hospital, we care a lot about the dental and oral health of your pet. Dirty teeth, gum infection, broken and damaged teeth and oral pain are common and can affect many different organ systems within your pet’s body. For that reason, we recommend annual dental examinations, so we can thoroughly assess your pet’s dental health. If your pet is showing signs of dental disease such as, but not limited to, bad breath, pawing at the face, reduced appetite or chewing, or red and bleeding gums, come in for a dental examination with a technician or mention these concerns during your examination with a veterinarian. We would be happy to review options to improve your pet’s dental health at that time.
What types of dental care for dogs do you offer at your clinic?
At North Town Veterinary Hospital, we provide a wide range of dental services. A veterinary technician can perform a complimentary dental exam on your furry friend, and go over some recommendations for his or her oral health. This may include preventative measures, like starting them on a dental food, providing daily dental treats, utilizing a water additive, or demonstrating and giving tips on how to brush your dog’s teeth. If prevention is not enough, we can perform a dental “prophy” (also known as a cleaning) under anesthesia to remove tartar and calculus and return the teeth to their original pearly white state. This includes charting, scaling, and polishing the teeth, just like at the human dentist! In some cases, teeth have to be removed, or “extracted” if they are too diseased, fractured, or if the roots are resorbed. In which case, a veterinarian does this under anesthesia at the same time as the prophy. We also have dental radiography on-site, in case x-rays are needed to see the roots below the gum line.
How often should you brush your dog’s teeth?
Here at North Town Veterinary Hospital, we recommend that you brush your dog’s teeth every 1-2 days. This is about the time it takes for the soft plaque on your dog’s teeth to turn into hard tartar. Plaque is easy to remove with brushing, where tartar is much more difficult, almost impossible to remove completely. Getting rid of the plaque before it has a chance to turn into tartar is the secret to keeping your dog’s teeth happy, healthy and white! Tip: brush your dog’s teeth as part of your daily routine (like when you brush yours at night), and it becomes easier to remember!
Why is oral and dental health important?
Your dog’s teeth may seem like a minor part of their body, but dental health can have a huge impact on their overall health and well being. Plaque and tartar can cause dental disease, which is associated with many problems, including pain, which can affect their appetite and mood. Bacteria in the mouth can travel in the bloodstream to affect other organs, including the heart and kidneys, and it also makes their breath smell very foul, which can make those wonderful doggy kisses not so nice. The rest of the mouth is also important to take care of, gum inflammation, masses, and infections affecting the eyes and nose can also be prevented and treated with good oral health care.