Dental disease is one of the most common problems we see in veterinary practice. It affects over 87% of dogs and 70% of cats over the age of three. Like human teeth, there are a variety of causes and well as different degrees of severity of dental issues.
The most common problem we see in our pets are plaque, tartar and gingivitis. As it is for us, often these are accumulated over time. If we can catch these early enough in the disease process, a dental scale and polish may be all that is required. If the disease progresses, causing damage to the teeth, it may then need extraction. Extreme cases of dental disease may even cause problems to the bones of the mouth.
X-rays are often helpful in determining what is occurring to the teeth under the gum lines as well. For example in the x-ray below you can see that there there is a tooth missing but part of the root has remained. It would not be possible to see this with the naked eye.
There are many different ways we can minimise dental issues. The most effective method is brushing teeth. Daily brushing involves using a toothbrush (animal ones are most useful) with a pet toothpaste. Note: Please ensure that a pet toothpaste is used as human toothpaste contains fluoride which is designed to be spat out.
Other products available which may help include: dental dry food, chews, liquid solutions and gels. There are also many other causes of dental problems, which our vets will be able to discuss with you.
Pet Smile Month
During the month of November, we are having a promotion, which includes free dental checks and 15% discount off dental products. If you wish to discuss further, please don’t hesitate to contact your nearest clinic.