As a pet owner, taking care of all aspects of your furry friend’s health, including dentistry, is essential. Dental care is often overlooked but is just as important for pets as it is for humans. In this blog post, we will discuss the importance of dental care for pets and how pet owners can ensure their pets have healthy teeth and gums.
We will review the common dental problems that pets face, the signs of dental problems, and prevention measures that pet owners can take to keep their pets’ teeth and gums healthy. We will also highlight the importance of regular dental check-ups and cleanings and the dental treatments available for pets. By taking care of their pets’ dental health, pet owners can ensure their pets have healthy teeth and gums, prevent serious health issues, and improve their pets’ overall health and well-being.
Pet dentistry is important for several reasons. Firstly, dental problems can be painful and can cause discomfort, which can affect a pet’s quality of life. Secondly, dental problems in pets can lead to other health problems, such as heart disease, kidney disease, and liver disease. Bacteria from dental infections can enter the bloodstream and spread to other organs in the body, causing serious health problems.
Thirdly, dental problems can lead to tooth loss, which can affect a pet’s ability to eat and lead to nutritional deficiencies. Finally, dental problems can be costly to treat, especially if they are not detected early. Regular dental care can prevent the need for costly dental treatments in the future. Overall, vet dentistry is essential for a pet’s health and well-being.
5 Common dental problems that pets face
Pets can suffer from several dental problems, just like humans. Some of the most common dental problems that pets experience include:
1.Periodontal disease: This is the most common dental problem in pets. The build-up of tartar and plaque on your pet’s teeth may lead to periodontal disease, which can cause pain, inflammation and even tooth loss. Additionally, dental disease may lead to other health problems such as infections in the heart, liver and kidneys. By regularly scaling your pet’s teeth to remove tartar build-up, pet owners can help prevent these serious health issues, improve their quality of life, and even improve their breath and make their teeth look brighter.
2.Tooth decay: Tooth decay is caused by bacteria that produce acid and erode the tooth’s enamel. It can lead to cavities, tooth sensitivity, and eventually tooth loss.
3.Broken or chipped teeth: This can happen due to trauma or from chewing on hard objects. Broken or chipped teeth can cause pain and discomfort and may require treatment such as extraction or a root canal.
4.Malocclusion: Malocclusion is a misalignment of the teeth or jaw. It can lead to difficulty eating, dental problems, and even pain.
5.Oral tumours: Oral tumours can develop in the gums, tongue, or other parts of the mouth. They can cause pain, and difficulty eating, and may require treatment such as surgery or radiation therapy.
Signs of Dental Problems in Pets:
Dental problems are common in pets, and it’s essential to recognise their signs early on to prevent them from progressing and causing more serious health problems.
‘We often see pets with advanced dental disease and the problems associated with it. If more pet owners were educated on what symptoms to look for when it comes to dental health, then pets would be brought to see us earlier and receive treatment for more mild symptoms. As the dental disease develops, the treatment options become more invasive and may even include surgery.’ Dr Jaime, Paws in the City
Common signs of dental problems in pets include:
- bad breath
- swollen or bleeding gums,
- loose or missing teeth,
- difficulty chewing or eating,
- pawing at the mouth.
Pet owners should take these signs seriously and seek veterinary care promptly. Untreated dental problems can lead to serious health issues such as heart disease, liver disease, and kidney disease, which can be life-threatening.
Prevention of Dental Problems
Preventing dental problems in pets is essential. Pet owners can take several measures to keep their pets’ teeth and gums healthy.
These measures include:
- regular brushing of their pet’s teeth,
- providing dental chews,
- feeding a healthy diet,
- regular dental check-ups.
Regular dental check-ups are crucial in identifying dental problems early and preventing them from progressing.
Regular dental check-ups and cleanings can help to prevent the build-up of plaque and tartar on the teeth, which is a major cause of dental problems. During a dental exam, dental vets can identify any dental problems early on, before they become more serious, and recommend appropriate treatment.
In addition to preventing dental problems, regular dental care can also improve a pet’s overall health. Bacteria from dental infections can enter the bloodstream and spread to other organs in the body, causing health problems such as heart disease, kidney disease, and liver disease. Regular dog and cat dental care can prevent these health problems from developing.
Dog teeth cleaning and cat teeth cleaning performed by a veterinarian can remove plaque and tartar build-up, which can prevent the development of periodontal disease and other dental problems.
Dental Cleaning for Pets
Dental cleaning is essential for pets with advanced dental disease. During the procedure, the dog dentist will perform a thorough dental exam, clean your pet’s teeth, and identify any dental problems early on. Dental cleaning for pets may require general anaesthesia, which comes with some risks. However, the benefits of dog dental cleaning outweigh the risks.
Dental Treatments for Pets
There are several dental treatments available for pets, such as tooth extraction, root canal therapy, and orthodontic treatment. These treatments may be necessary in some circumstances, such as severe tooth decay, trauma, or misaligned teeth. Your pet may need a simple dog scale and polish if the issue is brought to the attention of a vet dentist early on. Pet owners should always consult with their vet if you think your pet may be in need of dental work.
In conclusion, dental care is crucial for pets to ensure they live long and healthy life. Pet owners should take the necessary steps to prevent dental problems in their pets, including regular brushing, providing dental chews, and regular dental check-ups. Dental cleaning and treatments are also necessary in some cases.
It’s crucial for pet owners to seek veterinary care promptly if they notice any signs of dental problems in their pets. By prioritising dental care, pet owners can help their furry friends maintain healthy teeth and gums and enjoy a happy and pain-free life.