Virtually no one likes going to the dentist…but we all know it’s important! Dental care for humans and animals alike is something that should never be ignored. Proper dental hygiene is a critical part of keeping your pet healthy and happy, helping to avoid potentially life-threatening issues that come with dental disease. Want to know just a bit more? Dr. Tressa MacLennan from our Scottsdale location did a quick segment with a brief overview! Check it out:
While the joke is good for a small giggle, the better question is WHY you need to clean kitty’s teeth. The answer? Because they’re teeth. They get dirty.
Adult cats have 30 teeth – so there are a lot of places for problems to begin. Regular brushing at home combined with dental cleanings at the vet helps reduce plaque and tartar build-up that kickstarts inflammation and allows disease to creep in.
So, how’s your cat’s breath?
Get up close and personal to get a whiff of your cat’s breath. Is it regular old cat breath (meaning slightly fishy, but not overwhelming) or ‘OMG…I can’t even, oh noooooo…’ breath?
If it’s the first, great – that means you still have time to establish a preventive dental care plan.
If it’s the second – you and your cat have a real problem. Foul breath is the first indication of oral health problems and disease. Make an appointment with your vet. Don’t delay.
Still good? Go a bit further…
If your cat will allow it, gently flip their lip to reveal the teeth and gum area. Look for redness, swelling, bleeding, or inflammation of the gums. You’ll probably see discolorations on the teeth, too. Are any of the teeth chipped or broken? Any of these conditions require professional care.
Call your vet and make an appointment. Don’t delay.
Speaking of appointments with the vet…
All cats and dogs should have an annual health check up. Part of a thorough health check includes checking the pet’s teeth and gums for signs of disease. Sadly, too many domestic cats and dogs don’t get regular veterinary care until they are injured or they show definite signs of being sick.
Remember, your pet can’t tell you their teeth hurt, and cats are notorious for hiding pain. Don’t wait until your pet is clearly in pain or distress.
Not quite convinced?
February is Pet Dental Health Month, so you’ll save $50 off a dental treatment at any Arizona PetVet location. Find the nearest location.
The American Animal Hospital Association guidelines recommend regular brushing to keep your pet’s teeth healthy. Dental examinations and cleanings should be performed for all adult dogs and cats annually, starting at one year for cats and small-breed dogs, and at two years of age for larger-breed dogs. Here’s why:
Periodontal disease can lead to more serious health problems. Numerous studies show a link between gum disease and serious health issues like heart disease. (This is true for people, too) Prevention is the best approach, so regular brushing, dental exams and cleanings are vital.
Four out of five dogs over the age of three have some sort of periodontal disease. Plaque and tartar build-up on teeth is a sign of trouble, so make dental chewies, teeth brushing and regular check-ups part of your routine. Our feline friends need regular dental care as well.
Brushing means better breath. Bad breath can be an indicator of periodontal disease in people and in pets. Regular brushing helps keep teeth healthier and breath better, so those slobbery kisses won’t take your breath away.
Decay and gum disease can cause tooth loss in animals. This condition which can be very painful, and cause serious health problems. Regular care saves you money in the long run, and helps prevent tooth loss.
Symptoms of Hidden Dental Problems
Your pets can’t tell you directly that their teeth hurt, so you might not realize they have a serious dental issue until it’s too late. If your pet is drooling more than usual, has bleeding gums, loose teeth, or suspicious looking spots on their gums, make the appointment today.
“Imagine what would happen if you didn’t care for your teeth regularly. The same basics of dental care apply to your pet’s dental care. Periodontal disease is the most common disease in dogs and cats! About 85% of dogs and cats have some form of it and are vulnerable to the pain, bad breath and tooth loss that could follow. Chronic infections can spread to the heart, liver, lungs, and kidneys, where they can do even more damage.” C.E.T. Home Dental Care
Do you think a pets dental health is very important? As important as dental health is for you, it is just as important for your pets. Scheduling a veterinary dental evaluation and cleaning for your pet can easily uncover periodontal disease. This is the most common disease in US cats and dogs. Periodontal disease is also the most underdiagnosed and undertreated disease in pets. When left untreated, periodontal disease can be very painful and can lead to heart disease, kidney disease and even liver disease.
Visit Arizonapetvet.com to receive a $50 off coupon and schedule a pet dental cleaning today.