Why should you care for your pet’s teeth?
The risk of our pets developing gingivitis and periodontal disease is the same for animals as for people. Our pets are living longer due to better nutrition and better veterinary healthcare. Research shows that 75 - 85% of our companion animals have some degree of periodontal disease. Periodontal disease can affect many body systems in your pet, just as in humans.
If you never brushed your teeth, your mouth would be sore and you would have trouble eating. You might feel tired all of the time because the infection in your mouth would spread throughout your body. The exact same thing can happen in your pet’s mouth!! As your pet gets older, plaque (which consists of saliva, bacteria and food particles) builds up in their mouth, sticking to the teeth and collecting in the pockets around the teeth. If this plaque is not removed, an infection can result which could overwhelm your pet’s immune system, affecting the entire body and degrading the health of your animal. The mouth is the door to your pet’s health!! It takes a very strong immune system to protect your pet against a constant barrage of bacteria and toxins. This can weaken your pet’s immune system placing them at risk for contracting other diseases or illnesses.
Gingivitis is reversible! If teeth and gums are cleaned early, the mouth can be as “good as new”. However, if the disease is not arrested in time and the plaque and bacteria continue to accumulate, it can cause deep pockets around the teeth. If these pockets become deep enough to infect the bone supporting the teeth, irreversible change has occurred in the mouth. This is Periodontal Disease.
Periodontal disease can only be arrested. The damage caused cannot be completely reversed. Eventually’ the pockets become deeper, the bone is corroded and lost, and the bacteria and toxins get into the bloodstream causing widespread systemic disease. A pet with periodontal disease is circulating bacteria and toxins throughout their body which can result in liver, kidney, and/or heart disease.
What are signs of gingivitis or periodontal disease?
- Bad breath
- Difficulty chewing or eating
- Swollen or red gums (may bleed)
- Brownish-yellow stains on teeth
- Receded gums
- Loose or missing teeth
If you notice any of these signs, please schedule an appointment to determine the dental needs for your pet.
Discounted Dental Cleanings are offered in February and August. Use our PetDesk App or schedule your appointment on our Home Page.