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Why Your Pet’s Dental Health Is So Important


When your pet is suffering from gum disease, PetMD warns that bacteria from the infection triggers your pet’s immune system, and this leads to inflammation, which can destroy tissue as it kills bacteria. When this inflammation is present, there is the risk of bacteria entering your pet’s bloodstream and spreading throughout their body. This can cause more infections and possible damage to other organs and body parts. 


Veterinary studies have shown evidence that periodontal disease is linked to heart disease like endocarditis. These pet periodontal disease studies have also found that there is a vicious cycle between this oral health problem and diabetes. If your dog is diabetic, they are at a much higher risk for severe levels of periodontal disease. Veterinary scientists have discovered that inflammation associated with gum disease affects blood sugar metabolism, so it is crucial to keep up with a regular pet dental cleaning routine if your pet is diabetic. Many times periodontal disease must be treated before diabetes can be stabilized. 


As we mentioned earlier, inflammation from periodontal disease can destroy healthy bone tissue in the mouth, and this can lead not only to missing teeth but also to a fractured jaw. Unfortunately, since the bone tissue in the mouth has been affected by inflammation, it can be difficult for the fracture to properly heal. This serious pet dental health problem can be extremely uncomfortable for your dog. 

The best way to avoid these serious pet dental health issues is to maintain a regular oral hygiene routine with your dog. 5 Points Animal Hospital can also help with our veterinary health services, which include exams and cleanings. Contact us today to schedule a dental cleaning during the month of February and save 10 percent in honor of National Pet Dental Health Month.

Which Type of Dog Is Best for My Home?

When you make the decision to get your first dog, you should take a few things into consideration when choosing your new pet. To make sure your dog will be comfortable in your household, you will need to think about your lifestyle and daily habits. One of the most frequently asked questions we hear at 5 Points Animal Hospital has to do with the most important factors to consider when deciding on the best type of dog to become a member of the family. Over the past decade, we have provided comprehensive veterinary services to the community of East Nashville, and we love helping our neighbors find the perfect dog. We would like to share with you some qualities to think about when choosing a new pet.

Choosing the best type of dog for your home

Large or Small?

The size of dog that will be perfect for your home typically depends on whether you live in a small city apartment or a house with a backyard. If you absolutely have your heart set on a Golden Retriever but live in a one-bedroom condo, you can make adjustments but it would take extra work. If you have children, you may want to consider a medium-sized dog so neither the dog nor the children will get injured when they play.

High or Low Energy?

All dogs need daily routine exercise, but if you cannot go on one or two walks every day, The Spruce Pets recommends that you choose a Basset Hound or other lower energy breed of dog. If you are on the other end of the spectrum and want a dog who can be your running buddy, active breeds like Border Collies may be the right choice for you.

Puppy or Adult?

While deciding to bring a new dog home is a major commitment, choosing a puppy will involve taking on even more responsibilities. Make sure that you have the time and patience to successfully house-train your new pet, and realize that there could be many accidents to clean up in the house for the first six months. You will also need to be dedicated in training them on properly behavior, inside and outside your home. Adult dogs typically have been trained and housebroken, but you should keep in mind that they will need a brief period of adjustment to living in a new home.

Choosing your dog is one of the most important decisions you will make in your life. For more information about finding the perfect pet for your home, contact us at 5 Points Animal Hospital. We are here to help you with every step of this exciting and life-changing experience.

February Is National Pet Dental Health Month

When you own a pet, you are responsible for their health and happiness. One of the commitments is to take care of their teeth and gums. You may be thinking that this only mean routinely brushing your pet’s teeth. However, to avoid serious dental health issues, your pet needs get a check up for their teeth every six months to ensure it is healthy.

smiling doggieStatistics show that 85 percent of pets suffer from periodontal disease by the time they turn three years old. At 5 Points Animal Hospital, we understand the importance of your pet’s dental health. We are here to help your pet avoid the adverse effects of periodontal disease. In honor of February being National Pet Dental Health month, we are offering a 10 percent discount on dental cleanings for the entire month of February. We would like to tell you more about the importance of having your pet’s teeth cleaned in our East Nashville location, and we also have tips to help keep your pet’s mouth healthy for the long run.

Why does my pet need to get his teeth professionally cleaned?

Periodontal disease progresses in stages, and it begins when bacteria and food particles combine to form plaque on the teeth. The plaque then quickly bonds with more bacteria in the mouth to become tartar later. Tartar then hardens to the teeth and provides an easy pathway for bacteria to get underneath the gums. This stage is more serious than gingivitis.

The next stage is periodontal disease, which puts your pet at risk of losing their teeth. While you can remove plaque from your pet’s teeth and gums at home, the only way to remove tartar is with a professional veterinary dental cleaning, according to VetStreet. After a cleaning from our staff at 5 Points Animal Hospital, we will make a follow-up appointment to check if we were able to reverse the progress of gingivitis. Unfortunately, we cannot reverse the damage once it reaches the periodontal stage. It is so important to bring your pet in every six months for a professional teeth cleaning.

What can I do at home between cleanings to help avoid periodontal disease?

While it is very challenging at first to brush your pet’s teeth, 5 Points Animal Hospital can show you tips with a finger toothbrush to make this task easier. Pet toothpaste is available in a variety of flavors such as chicken and malt, so you may have to try a couple of different ones to see which they prefer.

If plaque is a concern, we can recommend a plaque prevention product that you can apply to your pet’s teeth every week that greatly reduces plaque. Another way to promote good dental health is to give your pet a special diet and treats, which also help to the formation of reduce plaque and tartar. Larger kibbles provide abrasive action that can remove food particles from your pet’s teeth, and there are even food that contain special ingredients to help prevent tartar mineralization.

Celebrate National Pet Dental Health Month with us this February with 10 percent off dental cleanings! Contact us at 5 Points Animal Hospital today to schedule your appointment.

Keep Your Pets Warm This Winter

One of 5 Points Animal Hospital’s favorite neighborhood spots, the Shelby Dog Park is a popular place throughout the year fordog with scarf dogs to run and play while their owners make new friends, catch up with familiar faces, and enjoy fresh air and sunshine.

However, the moderate weather we usually enjoy can get bitterly cold from time to time during the winter, and you may wonder how safe it is for you and your dog to be outside for longer than a few minutes when the temperature drops below freezing. To help keep your pets warm this winter, we would like to share with you a few tips. When it comes to the health and safety of your pets, you can count on us to help you take care of your four-legged babies.


When the temperature drops below freezing, you should keep your dogs and cats inside your home with you and your family, according to the Humane Society of the United States. Even if your cat normally roams around outside during the rest of the year, it is vital that he stay indoors when it is this cold. If your dog must stay outside during the day, you must provide him with an appropriately sized shelter to protect him from the wind, rain, and snow. Make sure the floor of the shelter is raised up a few inches above the ground.


Although it is recommended to keep your pets inside when it is below freezing, you should still take your dog on short walks at least a couple times a day. When it is this cold, the windchill can be dangerous by increasing the risk for frostbite and hypothermia. If your dog is short-haired, he may be more comfortable wearing a sweater. Another thing you should be careful about when walking your dog is rock salt. It can irritate his paw pads. Just be sure to wipe all of his feet off with a damp towel as soon as you can to keep him from licking them because it can irritate his mouth. If your dog does happen to ingest any rock salt, contact 5 Points Animal Hospital immediately. The sooner we can treat your dog for salt poisoning, the better.

Stay warm and cozy with your pets this winter. Contact us at 5 Points Animal Hospital for any more tips on how to keep your furry friends safe and healthy this season.

Last Minute Stocking Stuffers for Your Pets

If you include your cat or dog on your holiday gift list, you are not alone. According to a survey from PetMD, 80 percent of pet owners put something special under the tree for their pets. Looking for last minute stocking stuffers to make this holiday the best one for your pets? To help you save time during this hectic rush before Christmas, 5 Points Animal Hospital has picked out our favorite treats for your pets.


dog by the Christmas tree Dogs absolutely love to have a new chew toy to conquer. However, you need to make sure to not give your dog a toy that could harm his teeth. Rubber toys offer more flexibility than rigid metal toys, and you can never go wrong with dental treats. Taking care of your dog’s teeth is easy with chews that contain ten percent Chlorhexdine Gluconate. Other chew toys recommended by 5 Points Animal Hospital include bully sticks and pressed pork hide.


If you are having a hard time finding holiday stocking stuffers for your cat, a kitty crinkle sack is a great idea. It is made from synthetic lambswool. Your cat will love snuggling inside this sack when he is not playing with it. This adorable sleeping bag also provides the perfect setting for sweet kitty Instagram moments, which can be hard to capture.


Cat owners no longer have to be envious of the interactive fun that dog owners have when they play catch. LED light pointers allow you to play active games with your cat. You can even find rotating laser pointer toys that you can control by pressing a button, this gives your cat red dots to chase for hours.


You can never go wrong with special food treats for your pets’ holiday stockings. Your cat will love a box of catnip fortune cookies, and your dog will appreciate organic cookies with festive holiday decorations. While the holidays are typically a time to splurge on treats, 5 Points Animal Hospital does recommend that you consider your pet’s diet when selecting food gifts. Moderation is always key, as this helps to avoid your pet getting an upset stomach over the holidays.

Our staff at 5 Points Animal Hospital wants to wish you, your pets, and the rest of your family a safe and happy holiday season. We are here to help you with all of your veterinary needs, so please do not hesitate to contact us!

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