Can Dental Care Extend Your Pet’s Life?

Your pet’s bad breath may be a warning sign of some serious health problems. According to the American Veterinary Dental Society, 80% of dogs and 70% of cats show signs of periodontal (gum) disease by age 3. Periodontal disease is one of the most common conditions seen in pets today. Pet dental chews and dental spray may help to an extent, but they are not nearly enough to completely protect your pet.

Plaque and tartar build up on your pet’s teeth. Plaque naturally harbors bacteria, which infects gum tissue and the roots of teeth. The bacteria will eventually enter the bloodstream through the large blood vessels in the gums. At this stage, the organs with the highest blood flow are susceptible to infections, including:

  • Lungs
  • Heart
  • Kidneys
  • Liver
  • Brain

Infection in these vital organs can seriously shorten the lives of our pets.

Warning Signs of Dental Disease

  • Bad breath – one of the first signs of dental disease
  • A yellow or brown crust of plaque on the teeth near the gum line
  • Visible pus or discharge
  • Red and swollen gums
  • Pain or bleeding when your pet eats or when the mouth is touched
  • Decreased appetite or difficulty eating
  • Drooling
  • Loose or missing teeth
  • Pawing at the mouth

*Your pet can have gum disease without showing any signs.

Brushing your pet’s teeth is important, but it’s not enough.

If your pet has any of the warning signs, periodontal disease may be present. Don’t delay, schedule an appointment for an examination today. Each one of our animal hospitals is outfitted with an ultrasonic pet dental cleaning station. All NVC veterinarians are experienced and trained to perform professional feline and canine dental cleanings and tooth extractions, if necessary.

We have excellent dental care prices all year round, so schedule your appointment now.