Greencross Pet Library

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What is Dental Disease?

Dental disease, or periodontal disease is caused by an infection called plaque. Plaque is made up of food particles, saliva and bacteria. It sticks to the tooth surface and if not removed will calcify into tartar (or calculus).

This takes place above and below the gum line and over time can lead to the destruction of the supportive tissues and jawbone, resulting in bad breath and eventual loss of teeth.

How do I know if my pet has dental disease?

More than 80% of dogs and cats over three years old have some form of periodontal disease. There are various signs you can look out for such as:

  • Bad Breath
  • Excessive drooling
  • Discoloured teeth
  • blood stained / inflamed Gums
  • Loose teeth
  • Symptom
  • Bad Breath
  • Excessive drooling
  • Discoloured teeth
  • blood stained / inflamed Gums
  • Loose teeth
  • Symptom

How do I prevent dental disease?

For adult cats and dogs with existing dental disease, a dental treatment with a scale and polish under general anaesthetic is oft en necessary to get their mouth back into top condition. This will allow us to start prevention with a clean mouth and hoping to prevent, or slow down dental disease developing again in the future.

Here are some tips on how to prevent your pet from getting dental disease:

Brushing your pets teeth.

Brushing your pet’s teeth daily can help control plaque build up and prevent periodontal disease.

Select a toothbrush:
  • Choose a soft toothbrush only.
  • Electric toothbrushes are easy to use and more efficient.
  • Toddler brushes are great for small dogs and cats.
  • Label your pet's toothbrush and keep it separate from family brushes.
  • Dog and Cat toothbrushes are available at the clinic.

Introducing your pet to teeth brushing

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5 Steps to effective teeth brushing

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Alternatives to teeth brushing

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What should I do if I suspect my pet has dental disease?

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