This is Why Your Pet Needs Dental Care Too
People understand the need for dental care for humans. With the high sugar content in the foods we eat, as well as the damage caused by particles caught between teeth, people need dental care daily. It starts with brushing your teeth and flossing, but also requires a bi-annual visit to a dentist for more serious issues.
Unfortunately, many people forget to care for their pets’ dental needs. They do not brush their teeth, or give them dental treats. This results in frequent issues for the pet, such as periodontal disease or bleeding from the mouth. Left unchecked, these issues can cause expensive, painful problems for your pet, and you.
Why Your Pet Needs Dental Care
There is a common problem that affects teeth in humans and pets: the buildup of tartar on the gums around the teeth. Starting from food debris, tartar hardens and pushes the gums down exposing the vulnerable, lower parts of the teeth. In humans, the buildup of tartar is blocked by brushing and flossing. In pets, this growth can go unchecked causing decay and serious issues.
You may notice symptoms that indicate your pet needs dental care. These symptoms include:
- Bad breath
- Loose teeth
- Pain and negative response to petting near the mouth
- Drooling or dropping food from the mouth
- Bleeding from the mouth
- Loss of appetite and weight loss
If you see your pet having a combination of these symptoms, it may be time to get in touch with your veterinarian and get help.
How to Care for Your Pet’s Teeth
Even though it can be tough to take children to the dentist, they can still understand they are there for a reason. People put up with a little pain in order to protect their teeth. Unfortunately, pets can’t understand what is being done to them and why. This is why serious dental procedures require your pet to be anesthetized.
Once they are asleep, vets can brush beneath the gum line, removing the tartar and reducing the chance of periodontal disease. These full cleanings must be done to help clean up your pet’s teeth.
What Can I Do at Home?
It is possible to do some things at home to help take care of your pet’s’ teeth. While you can’t provide the full cleanings without the anesthesia, you can help do preventative maintenance. Surprisingly, you can still brush your pet’s teeth at home. While it can be difficult to get your pet to calm down, it is helpful to get their teeth clean. Ideally you’d brush every day but we know that isn’t always possible.
If you have never brushed your pet’s teeth or need to give them a full dental workup, contact us at Riverside Animal Care. We can help you with a full dental cleaning and connect you with the right tools and steps to care for your pets at home.