A cat or dog dentist not only cleans your pet's teeth but can also perform extractions, root canals, periodontal treatment and other oral procedures needed to keep your pet's teeth and gums strong and healthy. Professional cleaning is especially important to adult and senior pets. As they age, your pet's teeth and gums suffer the same decay human teeth and gums do. Unless completely removed by a veterinary dentist at least once a year, oral bacteria accumulates on teeth, eventually forming yellowish deposits of plaque and tartar. Cavities, gum disease, periodontitis and tooth loss affects nearly 80 percent of adult pets that do not receive veterinary dental care.
Dog Teeth Cleaning/Cat Teeth Cleaning Tips for Pet Owners
In between taking your pet for wellness and dental exams, you can help reduce plaque and tartar on your pet's teeth at home with these tips:
Provide rawhide chews, chew toys and knuckle bones for your dog to chew on. Although chewing doesn't remove all plaque and tartar, it does help reduce the amount of plaque developing on canine teeth. Do not give dogs extremely hard objects to chew, such as rib, steak or ham shank bones. They could fracture a dog's back teeth. Also, choose chew toys with rough surfaces that are large enough to prevent choking. Feed your dog crunchy food stamped with "VOHC-approved". This means the food is formulated to be a tooth and gum cleansing product according to guidelines set by the Veterinary Oral Council. Brush your dog's teeth at home with canine toothbrushes angled specifically to make it easier to reach the back teeth. Fingertip dog toothbrushes are also available that slip over your finger. Don't brush your dog's teeth with human toothpaste. It contains ingredients like detergents and abrasives that could make your dog ill. Use flavored dog toothpaste containing ingredients safe for dogs to swallow.
Cat owners know how cats hate to have someone mess with their mouths. Since cleaning at home is nearly impossible for most cat owners, your vet recommends having your cat's teeth professionally cleaned regularly. During a cleaning procedure, your cat will be sedated for a short time (typically less than 30 minutes) so the vet can clean and examine all teeth carefully without upsetting your cat. Cats are slightly more prone to periodontitis than dogs because cats are strict carnivores with teeth designed to stay healthy by chewing the bones and flesh of rodents, birds and similar prey. Domesticated diets we feed our cats today often promote dental problems in cats.
Visit Bridgwater Veterinary Hospital for Your Pet Dental Care
Schedule an appointment with our cat and dog dentist by calling us at (204) 452-0911.