It’s hard to believe that four in five of our dog and cat patients over three years of age have some form of dental disease. While many people believe that bad breath is normal for their furry friends, it can be an indication of dental disease.
What causes dental disease?
Dental disease, is inflammation of the teeth and gums caused by the build-up of plaque and tartar. Plaque is made up of food particles, saliva and bacteria, which sticks to the surface of the tooth and if not removed will calcify into tartar and progress from there.
This takes place above and below the gum line and over time can lead to the destruction of the supportive tissues of the teeth including bone, resulting in bad breath, oral pain and loss of teeth.
How can I help my pet have a healthy teeth and gums?
Regular vet checks will help to identify any development of dental disease and will allow your vet to discuss the best management plan for your pet. For adult cats and dogs with existing dental disease, a dental treatment with a scale and polish under general anaesthetic is often necessary to get their mouth back into top condition. This will allow us to start preventative measures with a clean mouth and prevent, or slow down, dental disease developing again in the future.
There are things you can do at home such as introducing premium food, specifically dental diets that can significantly reduce the development of tartar. Some chewy treats are also specifically designed to reduce tartar, promote healthy gums and freshen breath.
If your pet is calm and relaxed, daily brushing of their teeth with a specially designed pet toothbrush and pet tooth paste is also very beneficial.
For more information about how to keep your pet’s teeth healthy talk to your local Greencross Vets team or make an appointment online today for a FREE dental health check and $50 off a scale and polish if needed, simply include code GX606 in the ‘Referral Code’ section of the booking form.
Before and after dental procedure
A dental scale and polish procedure is sometimes required depending on the grade of dental disease present. It includes charting and scaling, both ultrasonically and by hand, and then finishing with a polish.
Just like your own dentist, we use specialised instruments to ensure your dog is safe and comfortable throughout the procedure.