We’ve all heard the old adage, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” It’s an understandable approach to home or car ownership, but it really doesn’t have a place in the realm of pet care. Instead of only reacting to emergency illness or injury, the quality of a pet’s life utterly depends on a dozen daily habits. Optimal, age-appropriate nutrition, for example, or opportunities to get their blood pumping add vitality and contribute to contentment.
Additionally, to bolster long-term, full body fitness, upholding excellent pet dental health is part of the longevity puzzle.
Why Pet Dental Care Matters
Pet dental health consists of two components: daily brushing at home and routine professional cleanings/exams. Without any attention to a pet’s teeth and gums, the development of gum disease, oral infections, and systemic illness are likely.
Proactive Pet Dental Care
The American Animal Hospital Association recommends routine dental procedures commence at age 1 for cats and small dogs and age 2 for large-breed dogs. Dental cleanings and oral examinations are safely conducted under general anesthesia. With this regular opportunity we can prevent dental disease, a painful infection of the gums, teeth, and surrounding structures.
Keep it Clean!
A vast majority of pets over the age of three show signs of periodontal (gum) disease. Plaque, tarter, naturally occurring calcium salts in the saliva, undigested food, and oral bacteria build up over time. Left alone, hard tartar creates small pockets between the gums and teeth. More bacteria and food start to fill the pockets, potentially resulting in broken, loose, or missing teeth.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, the oral bacteria can eventually enter a pet’s bloodstream and cause serious health problems in the heart, liver, and kidneys.
Most owners are alerted to the importance of pet dental health after discovering “doggie breath” or “kitty mouth”. Other symptoms may include:
- Lethargy or depression
- Lack of grooming
- Inappetence and weight loss
- Red, swollen gums
- Facial swelling
- Discharge of the eyes or nose
- Pawing at the face
Owners can promote pet dental health by routinely brushing their teeth at the end of the day. Sure, this can take practice, patience, and determination (for both pets and people alike) but the benefits to overall health are significant.
We Can Help!
We are offering a dental special! During the months of September and October, you can save $40 on your pet’s professional dental cleaning. We also provide owners with a free dental kit full of helpful supplies intended for ongoing pet dental health practices at home.