Although we brush and floss every day, many pet owners don’t realize how important professional dental care and routine oral hygiene are for their pets’ health. Just like people, cats and dogs need dental care to keep their smiles (and their bodies) healthy.
Why Pet Dental Care Is Essential
Without care, plaque and tartar accumulate on a pet’s teeth. As it builds over time, pockets develop between the gums and teeth where harmful bacteria thrive. Left unchecked, this bacteria becomes an infection called periodontal or gum disease. In addition to bad breath and accelerated tooth decay, gum disease leads to bleeding, painful, and swollen gums.
The effects of this disease, unfortunately, aren’t restricted to the discomfort in the mouth. Bacteria from untreated periodontal disease can get into the bloodstream. This can damage organs throughout the body, cause sepsis, and eventually can lead to death.
How to Care for Your Pet's Teeth and Gums
A solid dental health routine for pets looks a bit like a human’s dental care. Your pet’s oral hygiene routine should include a combination of at-home care and professional dental appointments.
At home, you can brush your pet’s teeth with a special pet toothbrush and toothpaste formulated for cats or dogs. You can also provide your pet with dental-friendly treats and chew toys designed to promote oral health.
What to Expect During a Pet's Dental Exam
A pet dentistry appointment is similar to your own dental appointment, except that pet dental exams occur with pets sedated for their comfort and safety. Our veterinarian will scale and polish your pet’s teeth to remove plaque and tartar buildup. We’ll perform a thorough examination and take a set of dental x-rays to ensure your pet’s teeth are healthy inside and below the gum line.
Pet Dentistry in Redondo Beach
Pacific Animal Hospital offers a complete menu of pet dentistry services. In addition to routine cleanings, we are also fully equipped to provide dental x-rays, tooth extractions, and additional dental care treatments. To learn more or to schedule a dental consultation or dental exam for your pet, contact us today.