It is recommended that a full dental cleaning by your veterinarian be done for your pets every 6 months – just the same as your dentist recommends for you. This is in addition to your daily home care. Just as you brush your teeth every day between dentist visits so should you brush your pet’s teeth every day. With proper home care your pet may not need that 6 month dentistry thereby saving you the expense and your pet the anesthetic.
PROFESSIONAL DENTAL CLEANING
As soon as you notice tartar accumulation or bad breath it is time for a professional cleaning. Waiting will only allow more time for the inflammation/infection of the gum to worsen and spread and make the time under anesthesia more prolonged. Unfortunately anesthesia is always required to adequately assess and clean all surfaces of all the teeth, both above and below the gum line. In addition, anesthesia eliminates all discomfort from the procedure and allows the placement of a breathing tube into the windpipe so bacteria do not enter the lungs.
Modern veterinary medicine offers a wide array of safe and effective anesthetics with monitoring equipment that allay previous concerns of anesthesia. Today’s anesthetics are dramatically safer than those of even a few years ago. Preanesthetic blood testing will determine if your pet is a candidate for the anesthesia. The risks of a constant infection in the mouth are far greater than the risks of anesthesia, even in older pets.
So check your pet’s teeth – today. If you see a yellow or brown accumulation on the tooth surface or a red line at the tooth-gum junction or a bad odour then call your veterinarian to make an appointment to have your pet’s teeth evaluated. It is never too late and no pet is too old to have a healthy mouth.