According to the American Veterinary Dental Society, more than 80% of dogs and 70% of cats have dental disease by the age of 3. Dental disease is the most frequently diagnosed health problem in pets. Bacteria and food debris accumulate around the teeth and, if left unchecked, will lead to the deterioration of soft tissue and bone surrounding the teeth. This decay can result in irreversible periodontal disease, pain, infection, and tooth loss. Dental disease can also affect other organs in the body. Bacteria in the mouth can get into the bloodstream and have serious effects on the kidneys, liver, lungs, and heart.
What are the commons signs of dental disease?
Common signs of dental disease include yellow or brown tartar buildup on the teeth, red, swollen, or bleeding gums, bad breath, excessive drooling, changes in eating or chewing habits, pawing at the face, loose teeth, and depression but many pets live with dental disease and do not show us any symptoms.
How often should my pet’s dental health be assessed?
We recommend that a veterinarian evaluates your pet’s dental health at least once a year. We will discuss many steps that can be taken to prevent dental disease including brushing or using oral wipes, using VOHC (Veterinary Oral Health Council) approved treats, products, and prescription dental diets as well as routine dental cleaning procedures performed under anesthesia. If more significant dental disease is noted, dental surgery and extractions are often required in addition to the cleaning.
What if my pet needs a dental procedure?
If your pet requires a dental procedure, our dedicated dentistry team will be caring for your pet from pre-dentistry communications through arrival, discharge, and recheck to ensure your pet receives the most consistent and safest anesthetic and dentistry as possible. All patients will receive a physical exam, pre-anesthetic blood testing, pre-surgical drugs prescribed to be given prior to arrival to reduce anxiety, anti-nausea medication to improve comfort, individualized anesthesia protocols, intravenous catheters, and fluids to allow for immediate access to drugs and to maintain blood pressure, active warming to maintain body temperature throughout the procedure, thorough monitoring with pulse oximetry, capnography, doppler blood pressures, and continuous ECG.
During the procedure, a complete oral exam, as well as full mouth X-rays, will be performed for a full dental assessment. After the dental assessment, we provide a comprehensive dental cleaning which includes ultrasonic scaling followed by hand scaling, polishing, any necessary dental extractions or procedures performed, a dental sealant (Sanos) applied, and multimodal pain control as needed throughout recovery. We can also facilitate a referral if your pet would benefit from a consultation with a board-certified veterinary dentist for endodontic treatments, restorative treatments, orthodontics or more complex oral surgery.
To schedule an appointment for your pet, contact us at 416-535-8387.