Tag Archives: cat dentist

How Do You Brush a Cat’s Teeth?

The Best Ways To Care For Your Feline’s Adult Cat Teeth

How Many Teeth Do Domestic Cats Have?

Cats have 30 adult teeth and 26 baby teeth. Regular brushing at home combined with dental cleanings at the vet help to reduce the presence of plaque and tartar, both which kickstart inflammation and potential diseases. So how can you tell when your cat needs a good clean? 

As gross as it may seem, the smell of your cat’s breath is either a good indication of proper oral hygiene or prospective disease. Feline halitosis (as bad breath is scientifically referred to) can be caused by many different things. Most common is periodontal disease, a build-up of plaque that irritates the gums and can lead to infection. If plaque is not removed, it can harden into tartar, serving as a formidable base on which more plaque builds up. 

Is Bad Breath an Indication of a Bigger Problem? 

Although bad breath in cats doesn’t always mean something’s awry, bad breath can sometimes serve as a warning symptom for a much more significant health problem. If the root of the (tooth) problem is caused by oral cancers, this can severely impact both the comfort and life span of your cat.  

The smell of your cat’s breath can also predict conditions that extend beyond the surface of the mouth. A urine or ammonia smell coming from your cat’s mouth may signal kidney disease which requires professional care, so it’s best to take your cat into your local veterinary clinic as soon as possible.

Brushing Habits

So, how often should you brush your cat’s teeth? Ideally, to prevent decay and infection a cat’s teeth should be brushed just as often as human teeth. We understand that daily brushing can seem unattainable and unrealistic – especially if you want to avoid invading your cat’s personal space and risking their wrath every night before bed! So, as a supplement to regular brushing, you can consider dental cleansing treats; just be sure to discuss these with your veterinarian to ensure they are an acceptable part of your pet’s individual diet.  

Preventative Care

During a cat’s annual health check-up, veterinarians will check your pet’s teeth and gums for signs of disease. Looking at their gums for redness, yellow tinting, swelling, bleeding, and inflammation can help your veterinarian rule out gingivitis, liver disease, and poor oral care. Many domestic cats don’t get regular veterinary care until they are injured, or they show definite signs of being sick, so be sure to help keep your pet in good health with once-a-year wellness exams. 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 before bringing them in!

Your Pet Probably Has Dental Disease

Pet dental disease is the most common and preventable health condition for pets. They start out with beautiful, shiny white teeth. But by age three, nearly 80 percent of dogs and 70 percent of cats have some form of dental disease. This can lead to more severe health problems.

Pets need dental care just like people. Without regular cleanings, plaque begins to build up on the teeth. Plaque is a nasty, sticky film caused by bacteria in the mouth. As plaque forms on the teeth, it irritates the gum tissue, causing red or swollen gums. Eventually, minerals in the saliva will harden the plaque into tartar.

Bacteria and plaque build-up on your pet’s teeth that isn’t removed through at-home brushings will mean bad breath and tartar are definitely in your pet’s future. Regular dental cleanings by veterinary professionals can reduce your pet’s risk for developing gingivitis, a painful inflammation of the gums, periodontal disease, and avoid tooth loss. Pets with periodontal disease are at risk for developing heart, liver or kidney disease .

if your pet has bad breath, red or swollen gums, missing, loose or cracked teeth or has experienced a recent change in appetite or trouble eating, it’s time for a trip to AZPetVet.

Find an AZPetVet location near you.

National Pet Dental Health Month is Here

2016_AZPV_DentalMonth_RD5-01The 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.

 

Save $50 on your pet dental visit before Dec. 31!

When was the last time you had your dog’s teeth cleaned, checked and refreshed? If it’s been more than six months, then that time might be now. Arrow Animal Hospital Group is offering a $50 savings at one of our member offices to have your pet dental visit done. But you must hurry – the offer is good only until December 31st.

When you book an appointment for your pet with one of our member veterinarians within the Arizona Arrow Group of Animal Hospitals, you will be assured of a full doctor exam, including, as needed, General anesthesia; Nursing care; Ultrasonic teeth cleaning, polishing and rinsing; as well as post-operative care with nurse and much more.

Many treatments can be performed in the exam room, such as vaccinations. For some treatments, such as blood draws and x-rays, we will take your pet to our treatment area where our highly trained staff can safely hold your pet during the procedures.

Arrow Group of Animal Hospitals has 16 convenient valley locations that offer a full complement of veterinary services for all of your pet’s needs. Our main goal is to ensure that you and your pets receive the highest level of care, service, and the most current treatment/techniques/medicine available.

We have a skilled and compassionate staff, state of the art facilities and equipment, and we combine the family element with a true compassion for you and your pets. We want you to feel like we are part of the family, especially during the holidays.

Dog dental disease is no barking matter!

You love your pets. You buy them the best quality food for their nutritional needs, exercise them for fun and enjoyment, and enjoy the companionship that they provide. You do everything you should as a responsible pet owner. Right? Not always.

Arrow Group of Animal Hospitals, veterinary dental care
One of the most overlooked areas of pet care is veterinary dental care of your dogs and cats. Like ourselves, your animals need professional teeth cleaning on a routine basis. In fact, most veterinarians recommend brushing your animal’s teeth and gums at east twice a week! How many of us are guilty of NOT doing that? Depending on the condition of your pet’s teeth, professional cleaning is recommended every 6 to 18 months.

Lack of brushing your pet’s teeth regularly can lead to other oral health issues, like periodontal disease, a common gum infection found in pets. It’s estimated that 80% of dogs and 70% of cats have some form of periodontal disease.

An animal’s mouth is very similar to ours. Their teeth are subject to the same problems that we can have, such as abscesses, receding gum lines, bone loss, gingivitis, rotten teeth and periodontal disease. When dental health is not addressed, eventually an animal will need things like root canal surgery and extractions. In severe cases, the bacteria and infection in the mouth will spread to the bloodstream, causing problems in the rest of the body, like the liver, kidneys and heart. In the worst cases, these problems will lead to a shorter life span.

Unfortunately, in our fast-paced lifestyle, regular dental brushings and checkups for our pets is a practice that often gets ignored or forgotten. And on top of it, soaring insurance costs coupled with a crippled economy has left many pet owners with minimal funds for their pet’s dental health needs. It’s become so critical that the American Veterinary Medical Association has declared February its National Pet Dental Health Month.

In Arizona, a group of Valley veterinarians have come together under the Arrow Group of Animal Hospitals banner to help bring about awareness to our dogs’ dental care. All the veterinarians in the group are committed to helping pet owners become more aware and learn the responsibility of taking care of their dogs’ dental needs.

“Sadly, most pets we see for regular physicals also show signs of dental negligence and in some cases, gingivitis,” says Dr. Roger Willms of Glendale, AZ’s Arrow Animal Hospital. “In day-to-day living, dog owners simply have a hard time keeping up with brushing their pet’s teeth. But it’s a major cause of concern. You really have to brush your pet’s teeth at least twice a week to make a difference. Otherwise, you’re not really preventing anything. Our pets need good dental care just as the rest of us do.”

Dr. Willms recommends a few tips to pet owners.

1) Bring your pet to the vet! Don’t wait for an annual checkup if you’re detect bad breath or see infected gums on your pet.

2) Start brushing your pet’s teeth at home and supplement their diet with specially formulated pet foods that assist in limiting plaque and tartar buildup. Look for products that have the ‘Seal of Acceptance’ from the Veterinary Oral Health Council, an organization initiated by the American Veterinary Dental Society to guide consumers. These products meet the standards for limiting plaque and tartar control in dogs and cats.

3) Be regular with your veterinary checkups for your pets. You would do the same for your childrens’ doctor visits, so do the same with your pets. Your veterinarian can monitor the progress of your pet’s dental health routine, and make individual recommendations.

Arrow Group of Animal Hospitals and its 16 affiliated animal hospitals in the Phoenix area are dedicated to the highest care of dogs, cats, and small animals. The doctors are highly-trained in the care of animals, and have undergone extensive training for the dental care of dogs and cats. If you’ve not made a veterinary dental visit recently, contact ArizonaPetVet.com and see one of the doctors from the Arrow Group of Animal Hospitals for all your pet needs.