According to the American Veterinary Dental Society 85% of adult pets have periodontal disease—the most common disease in dogs and cats. Fortunately, it’s simple and easy to treat.
Stage I Gingivitis: The gum is inflamed and swollen and plaque covers the teeth. Treatment can reverse the condition.
Stage II Early Periodontitis: The entire attached gum is inflamed and swollen. The pet's mouth is painful and bad breath is noticeable. Professional treatment and home dental care can prevent this from becoming irreversible.
Stage III Moderate Periodontitis: Infection and calcuclus are destroying the gum, which is bright red and may be bleeding. The pet's mouth is sore enough to affect eating and behavior. This is the tipping point where periodontitis has really taken hold and may be irreversible.
Stage IV Advanced Periodontitis: Bacteria may be spreading in the bloodstream throughout the body, possibly damaging the kidneys, liver and heart.
Can home dental care replace professional dental care?
No, Routine dental examinations combined with thorough teeth cleaning are needed to adequately control plaque and tartar.
Not all veterinary dental protocols are created equal. Here at the Ann Arbor Animal Hospital each pet dental procedure includes:
• Pre-anesthetic bloodwork
• Pre-anesthetic sedative
• Inhalent anethesia that allows rapid adjustments in anesthetic depth as needed
• Intravenous catheter and fluids throughout the dental procedure
• Monitoring of heart rate, oxygen saturation and blood pressure
• Ultrasonic scaling and polishing of teeth
• Fluoride application
• Dental radiographs and extractions if needed
• Recovery in a warmed kennel
• Free dental kit to take home.
The Ann Arbor Animal Hospital carries Virbac Animal Health Home Dental Care products (flavored toothpastes and premium chews with Chlorhexidine) for dogs, toothbrushes for dogs and cats, as well as special Hill’s Prescription Diet for Canine Dental Health.
Here's a great video from our friends at Virbac that demonstrates How To Brush Your Pet's Teeth.