Remember Your Pet’s Oral Health During National Pet Dental Health Month

The American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) has chosen the month of February for its National Pet Dental Health Month campaign to promote awareness of the importance of taking care of your pet’s teeth. Unfortunately, many pet owners do not think about their pets’ dental health until they notice that their dog or cat has bad breath, which is a sign of teeth and gum problems. Taking good care of your pet’s dental health is essential because, just like us humans, tooth decay and gum disease can lead to problems in the overall health of your dog or cat. Not only should you brush your pet’s teeth at least a couple of times a week, but you should also schedule a veterinary cleaning once a year. This month is the perfect time to make this appointment, and you can count on our staff at 5 Points Animal Hospital to properly clean your pets’ teeth and gums. We would like to tell you a bit more about the importance of good oral health habits for your pets.

What can I expect from a veterinary cleaning?Remember Your Pets Oral Health During National Pet Dental Month Image - Nashville TN - Five Points Animal Hospital

A dental cleaning appointment with our veterinarians will include cleaning, adjusting, filing, extracting, or repairing your dog or cat’s teeth. First, your pet will get an oral exam, and if we find problems, we can perform an x-ray to examine the condition of the jaw and the roots of the teeth below the gum line. This x-ray is important because most dental diseases are located in this area, which cannot be easily seen. In order to keep this area healthy, we will conduct a thorough dental cleaning that includes scaling to get rid of any plaque and tartar. In order to keep your pet comfortable while we are cleaning his teeth and gums, we use anesthesia during this procedure. While anesthesia can be risky, we take great care to ensure your pet’s safety. Our staff will discuss the effects of anesthesia with you before the cleaning, and we will be available to you if you notice any problems after taking your pet home after the procedure.

What are the signs of pet dental problems?

Of course, you should have your pet’s teeth cleaned once a year, but if you notice any of the following signs of dental problems, please contact our office as soon as possible. According to the AVMA, these signs include bad breath, broken or loose teeth, stained teeth, problems with chewing food, refusal to eat, bleeding in the mouth, and swelling in the mouth and surrounding areas.

What sort of dental health problems can my pet have?

Your pet can suffer from the same oral health issues as humans can. While pets do not seem to get as many cavities, they can develop abscesses and infections, cysts or tumors, misaligned teeth, defects of the palates, and periodontal disease.

Besides the annual veterinary cleanings, what else can I do to prevent pet oral health problems?

Frequently removing the plaque and tartar that builds up on your pet’s teeth is the most important preventive measure you can do at home. 5 Points Animal Hospital recommends that you brush your pet’s teeth every day, but we understand this is not always possible. Brushing your pet’s teeth several times a week can be just as helpful in preventing problems.

Keep your pet’s mouth healthy by scheduling a veterinary cleaning appointment this month. Contact us at 5 Points Animal Hospital for more details as well as suggestions for pet dental products and treats.

By Dr. Janet Grace | Tagged with: Tags: , , , , | Comments Off on Remember Your Pet’s Oral Health During National Pet Dental Health Month

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