Dental disease is one of the most common medical conditions that veterinarians see. At Martindale Animal Clinic we recommend that your pet’s dental health is evaluated at least once a year. Bacteria and food debris can accumulate as plaque and tartar, and if left unaddressed can lead to deterioration of the soft tissue and bone surrounding the teeth. This decay results in irreversible periodontal disease and even tooth loss.

According to the American Veterinary Dental Society, 80% of dogs and 70% of cats have oral disease by the age of 3. It is the most frequently diagnosed health problem in pets. Common signs of oral disease include tartar buildup, red and swollen gums, bad breath, changes in eating or chewing habits, pawing at the face, and generalized depression.

Bacteria from the mouth can get into the blood stream and can affect a number of organs in the body. Some serious issues include kidney infections, liver disease, lung disease, and heart valve disease.

Many pets do not display signs of dental disease even though they are in pain. Pain may be shown by pawing at the mouth or head shaking. They may chew with obvious discomfort, drop food from their mouth, swallow with difficulty, or drool excessively – their saliva may contain blood.

Oral Care for Your Pet

There are many different things you as a pet owner can do at home to help keep your pets teeth clean and healthy. Brushing teeth, giving dental chews, using Healthy Mouth (a water additive), or giving a dental diet are just a few different things you can do for your pet’s teeth. One of the best times to start caring for your pet’s teeth is when they are young before any plaque or tartar starts to build.

One of the best things to do for your pet’s teeth is to brush them. Starting at a young age is best but any pet can learn to love having their teeth brushed. Here at Martindale Animal Clinic we have a variety of toothpastes and toothbrushes for your dog or cat. It is very important to use a pet specific toothpaste. Daily brushing will remove plaque before it becomes mineralized and turns into tartar. If you are wanting to start to brush your pets teeth give us a call and we can give you some pointers!

CET Chews contain an enzyme that kills bacteria in the mouth. This is important because bacteria accelerate dental disease. CET Chews also soften when chewed and have a wiping action up around the sides of the teeth and gum line.

Royal Canin Dental Diet can be a very important tool for preventing dental disease. The kibbles are large which requires the dog or cat to chew the kibble several times before it breaks apart. The chewing helps to remove plaque and some tartar. Royal Canin Dental Diet contains a product called Zeolite that binds some of the minerals that adhere to the teeth and cause tartar. The Dental Diet is also a weight control diet that helps to keep your adult cat and dog healthy.

Healthy Mouth is a water additive that helps reduce plaque accumulation. Healthy Mouth has no alcohol, no xylitol, no dyes, or pharmaceutical agents, and no calories. Healthy Mouth can also reduce oral bacteria and freshen breath. Healthy Mouth acts like mouth wash but is designed for your pets.

Here at Martindale animal Clinic we take pride in our dental procedures. Our Registered Technicians and Doctors are always keeping your pets comfort level in mind. When extractions or surgery is required, the doctor will first administer a dental block to “freeze” the area. This will help us reach optimal pain control for your pet. All of our patients lay comfortably on a continuously warmed mattress during surgery, and recover wrapped in blankets on our heated floor.

The mouth is the gateway to the body. When dental disease is not addressed systemic disease can occur. This can mean infection to the heart valves, liver or kidneys. Dental disease is also painful for your pet but is extremely preventable! Call us today (905) 682- 5551 or click here to book an appointment for a dental assessment.