What type of dental care does my pet need?

Veterinary dentistry includes cleaning, adjusting, filing, extracting, or repairing your pets' teeth and all other aspects of oral health care. These procedures must be performed by a veterinarian or a board-certified veterinary dentist. Subject to state or provincial regulation, veterinary technicians may perform certain dental procedures under the supervision of a veterinarian. Most dogs and cats don't get the dental care they need to maintain good oral and general health.

Good oral hygiene not only protects your pet's teeth and gums, but it can also prevent the development of more serious problems, such as heart disease. All three of these conditions require treatment, which can range from antibiotics to anesthesia and complete tooth scraping or polishing. Teeth may need to be extracted or abscesses treated. The appropriate type of treatment is decided after a thorough oral examination.

Periodontal disease is the most common dental condition in dogs and cats. By the time your pet is 3 years old, it will most likely have some early evidence of periodontal disease, which will worsen as the pet grows if effective preventive measures are not taken. Unfortunately, pets don't understand what happens during dental procedures and often react by biting or straining. As with the annual checkup at the dentist, your dog or cat should have a dental exam at least once a year.

In addition, illnesses related to oral health conditions can shorten your pet's lifespan and cause significant pain. Like your annual checkup at the dentist, your pet should have a veterinary dental exam once a year. Inadequate dental care can cause problems such as periodontal (gum) disease or cause serious health problems and unbearable pain, according to the American Veterinary Medical Association. According to the American Veterinary Medical Association, many pets show early signs of periodontal disease after they turn 3 years old.

The most important thing is that you don't put off taking care of your pet's dental and oral needs. Your pet doesn't understand the benefits of dental procedures and reacts by moving, trying to escape, or even biting. In addition, anesthesia allows for better cleaning because your pet doesn't move and is at risk of being injured by dental equipment.

Chandra Vangompel
Chandra Vangompel

Subtly charming pizza junkie. Hardcore travel maven. Proud pop culture nerd. Extreme food evangelist. Total pop culture guru.