Dental Awareness Month
February is dental awareness month! Did you know that bad oral hygiene can affect your pet’s liver, kidneys, and heart function?! When dental plaque and tartar start to build up it creates bacteria in the mouth. If this is left to fester and continue to grow the bacteria will eventually make its way to your pet’s other organ systems. Their liver, kidneys, and heart are the primary affected organs in this case. To prevent this build up it is important to practice good dental hygiene with your pet early on in the puppy/kitten stages of life. Check your pet’s mouth daily so they get used to having their teeth examined at the vet’s office and so they aren’t scared when it is time to have their teeth brushed. Atlantic Animal Hospitals recommends brushing your pet’s teeth at least three times a week if not once daily to help prevent serious plaque/tartar build-up. Using a finger brush is ideal as pets typically don’t tolerate an actual toothbrush in their mouth. Always use veterinarian approved toothpaste as they are made with specific enzymes to break down the tartar/plaque in your pet’s mouth. There are other methods such as dental oral rinses, sealants that get directly applied to teeth/gums, dental chews, and water additives that are offered at Atlantic Animal Hospitals; however, the best option is to brush daily. Below is a dental chart that shows what grade of dental disease your pet may have.
Once your pet has reached the age of 3 or 4 years old they will typically need to have their first dental performed. After this point it depends on the breed of the pet, age and diligence of the owner in dental care as to when the next dental will need to be performed. Smaller breed dogs are more predisposed to dental disease compared to larger breed dogs so they may need a dental cleaning every 4 to 6 months.
If you would like your pet’s mouth examined to see where they fall on the dental scale our staff and veterinarians at Atlantic Animal Hospitals , with locations in Port Orange and Ormond Beach, would be more the happy to help. We offer dental procedures for both canines and felines at our hospitals that include ultrasonic scaling and full mouth x-rays. Our Wellness Payment Plans are a great way to make sure that your pet is up to date on everything it needs prior to getting a procedure like this as well as the dental itself – with the exception of any extractions required at the time of the dental. If you contact us today we can schedule an appointment to have your pet examined and prepare a treatment plan tailored to your pet’s needs. We can also help you find which Wellness Plan would be the best fit for your pet!