Dental care is perhaps the most overlooked and under-treated area in veterinary medicine. Most people are aware of the need for regular dental care for themselves; however, many do not realize their pets can be similarly affected by periodontal disease. In fact, by the age of 3 years, 80% of pets are affected by dental disease.
The most common symptom of poor dental hygiene is bad breath, however, it’s not the only clue that your pet may be suffering from periodontal disease.
The following are common symptoms of periodontal disease:
- bad breath
- excessive drooling
- reluctance to eat
- chewing with or favouring one side of the mouth
- excessive pawing at or rubbing the muzzle
- bleeding from the mouth
- swelling of the gums or side of the face
- chronic eye infections, draining tract under the eye
- sudden change in behaviour
- inability to open or close their mouth
- chronic sneezing
- discharge from the nose
- a growth in the mouth
To help control and prevent oral issues from developing, we encourage you to brush your pet’s teeth and check their mouth on a regular basis. Early preventive measures, such as at-home care and in-clinic teeth cleanings will help to reduce the frequency and severity of dental disease later in life. However, even with a rigorous oral regime at home, it is important that your pet’s teeth be checked by a veterinary doctor every six to twelve months.
Here at the Tower Hill-Bathurst Animal Hospital, we offer comprehensive examinations of your pet’s teeth and gums. Through an oral examination, we can determine if your pet requires further treatment for periodontal disease – perhaps a change in diet or dental cleaning is in order. When dental procedures are booked, we use special tools to remove tartar from below the gum line and smooth the surface of each tooth to prevent tartar buildup, just like when you visit your dentist.
There is no substitute for professional veterinary dental care – oral examinations and routine dental cleanings are critical in maintaining a healthy mouth, and ultimately a healthy pet!
Call us today to schedule your pet’s appointment!