Did you know that many diseases can be traced back to bacteria that begins on the surface of a tooth? Diabetes, heart disease, and joint problems have all been linked back to dirty teeth in cats and dogs.
At Firehouse, we urge our clients to bring pets to us once a year for a dental exam and cleaning. This lets us look under the gum line to inspect for disease, and if found, head problems off at the pass.
We’re proactive with dental care for two reasons:
- Research shows that 70% of cats and 80% of dogs have some kind of periodontal disease.
- We know that periodontal disease is treatable if caught early. However, if an infection spreads, there are limited options for saving damaged teeth, gums, or bone.
Proper pet dental care maintains healthy teeth AND a healthy body.
Pet owners can help reduce bacteria in the mouth by establishing a consistent oral hygiene regimen at home. At Firehouse, we recommend:
- Brushing your cat or dog’s teeth daily (10 swipes across each side, using a pet toothbrush with some pet toothpaste)
- Starting this habit when your pet is young. If your pet is past the puppy/kitten stage, begin ASAP! Forming a new habit is better than risking disease.
- Visiting your veterinarian for an annual oral exam and professional teeth cleaning
The need for professional cleaning exists in veterinary medicine for several reasons:
- Our pets put strange things in their mouths.
- Our pets’ teeth are never brushed as well or as often as our own.
- Our pets often hide pain and discomfort in their mouths.
We strongly believe that regular dental care is a key way to protect pets from pain, infection, and illness. When there is a commitment to proactive and preventive oral care, pets live healthier lives.
Cleanings and exams occur while your pet is under anesthesia. If anesthesia worries you, please know that the Firehouse team is highly trained to place your pet under anesthesia and monitor him/her the whole way through the procedure. Since pets won’t let us poke around their mouth or take x-rays while they’re awake, anesthesia is the only way to truly get under the dog or cat’s gum line and thoroughly examine their teeth.
Dentistry is an extremely important part of us helping care for your pet. If you would like to know more, please call us at 512-645-1000.