Why is dental care important?
Dogs and cats are affected by periodontal disease just like humans. If left unmanaged the bacteria in the mouth can build up on and beneath the gum line and cause periodontal disease. Periodontal disease is the destruction of bone, gum tissue and structures that hold the teeth in place. Periodontal disease is painful and can have effects on the heart, liver and kidneys.
If your pet has brown/yellow teeth, bad breath, or is having difficulty eating, these could all be signs of dental disease. Please call us at (310) 638-4149 today to learn more and schedule your pet’s’ dental cleaning.
Use the link below to grade your own pet’s periodontal disease and learn more:
How can I prevent periodontal disease?
Periodontal disease is very preventable and the ways to prevent are very similar to our oral health care needs. To keep plaque/tartar at a minimum at home dental care and annual dental cleanings are recommended. Can you imagine how your mouth would feel if you never went to the dentist or took care of your teeth at home?! The same applies to our pet’s at home care which should include (toothbrushing (with pet approved toothpaste or water), dental chews, and/or water additives.
Use this link below to see a list of Veterinary Oral Health Council approved products you can use at home to help with your pets oral health:
Use the link below to learn how to brush your pets’ teeth:
Does my pet have to be anesthetized for a dental cleaning?
Scaling (scraping surface of the tooth with an instrument) the plaque and tartar from the outside surfaces of the teeth does not remove the plaque and bacteria from beneath your pet’s gumline and does not decrease the risk of your pet getting periodontal disease. Consider this, the same level of “gross” build up you see on your pet’s teeth, is also thriving beneath their gumline where you can’t see it or the damage it’s doing. Cleaning and scaling below the gum line is most important because it’s where periodontal disease is most active. This can’t be done without anesthesia.
Teeth that have been scaled and not polished are a prime breeding ground for more bacteria growth which perpetuates oral disease.
Anesthesia free dental cleanings provide no benefit to your pet and do not prevent periodontal disease at any level. In fact, it gives you a false sense of security as a pet owner that because the teeth look whiter that they are healthier.
The costs of anesthesia free dental cleanings are cheap to begin with. The ultimate costs to both your wallet, and pet’s dental health, are far more of an expense.
What evaluations does my pet need for anesthesia?
Your pet will first be examined prior to any dental procedure to make sure there are no outward signs of disease that may prohibit anesthesia. Laboratory work will be recommended to evaluate your pet’s internal organ function prior to anesthesia. Other tests such as x-rays/radiographs may be recommended dependent upon your pets physical exam or laboratory findings.
What is your anesthesia protocol?
During your pets dental cleaning we monitor blood pressure, blood oxygen, heart rate, carbon dioxide levels, respiration rate, and temperature. Your pet will be on IV fluids throughout the procedure and kept warm with warming blankets/mats. We would be more than happy to discuss every step of the process with you if you have questions!
Why do I need dental radiographs/x-rays?
A comprehensive veterinary dental cleaning will include radiographs. This is the only way to identify other painful problems that may exist in your pet’s mouth under the gum, in the bone or involving the tooth root due to periodontal disease.
What is your protocol if you identify diseased teeth?
It is not uncommon for seemingly healthy teeth to show signs of disease beneath the surface. Following dental radiographs/x-rays if disease teeth are identified we will contact you during the procedure about pricing and treatment of these teeth to alleviate any pain and prolong your pets comfort.