Dental Care

       
Regular dental care is a vital aspect of your pet’s wellness program and is one of our top priorities. Dental issues can range from excess plaque and halitosis to broken, painful teeth, and periodontal disease. All are serious conditions that can often progress into much larger, dangerous medical issues. A complete dental health program includes regular dental exams, cleanings and treatments, followed by an effective at-home regimen.

Getting your puppy or kitten accustomed early to having its teeth brushed is a good start, however, it’s never too late to begin. (Click here to visit our Facebook page for an excellent “how-to” video.) If tooth brushing doesn’t work for you, there are a variety of other home-care ways to help reduce plaque and tartar build-up and stretch the time between cleanings. Some of these are special foods, such as Hills T/D and Purina DH diets, and water or food additives that contain special enzymes to prevent plaque from adhering to the tooth surface. Some owners prefer a rinse or gel that can be applied to the gums. Others might use specially treated rawhide chews that not only keep calculus away through abrasion, but also utilize special plaque-fighting enzymes. It is important to use a product that has received the VOHC (Veterinary Oral Health Council) seal of approval which ensures that it will produce the desired effect. Choosing from the plethora of products available, however, can be overwhelming. We are here to help! Ask our knowledgeable staff about all the options and what might work best for you and your pet.

With even the best home care routine, however, occasional professional cleaning and polishing is needed. This process requires your pet to undergo anesthesia, which, even for elderly patients, is safe and closely monitored. Pre-anesthetic options are offered just as they are for our surgery patients. (See our Pre-Anesthesia Info under our RESOURCES Tab for details.) While your pet is anesthetized, we offer and recommend the option of digital dental x-rays. This technology has provided us with a superior tool for improving our ability to detect painful dental problems that would otherwise be missed such as bone loss from periodontal disease, root abscesses, resorptive/cavity type lesions, and evaluation of broken teeth and roots. Any problems identified can be addressed immediately.

After your pet’s dental prophylaxis visit, and, ideally followed by at-home care, your pet will be on its way to a healthy mouth and an overall improved physical condition.
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