04 Feb 5 Reasons to Prioritize Veterinary Dental Care for Your Pet
Oral health is essential for us as well as our companion pets. The oral cavity involves not only the teeth but also the tongue, gingiva, oral mucosa, hard palate, and jawbones. It receives food and sets up the stage for proper digestion. In dogs and cats, as well as many other species, the oral cavity is not merely used for eating but also play and grooming.
Why is Veterinary Dental Care so Important for Our Pets?
- Oral health is linked to overall health. In humans and animals, there is an association between oral health and systemic health. Infection and inflammation can easily spread from one area to the other. If the mouth is not healthy, how can the rest of the body be healthy?
- Dental disease is painful and debilitating. In many pets, it is not realized until an advanced age after years of neglect. Many pets will not show clinical signs of oral pain until an advanced stage since they adapt to and hide their pain so well. Continuing to eat, despite the presence of dental disease, is not a sign that a pet is not in pain. A pet’s survival instinct to eat is so strong they simply will not give it up until the pain is unbearable.
- Identify common oral conditions early. Periodontal disease is by far the most common oral disease seen in dogs and cats. Tartar accumulation occurs in as little as three days! If maintaining good oral health is not a focus, then it’s not “if” periodontal disease will happen, but “when.” Small breed dogs, such as Yorkshire Terriers and Chihuahuas, are at increased risk for periodontal disease compared to large breed dogs. Tooth resorption is the most common oral condition in cats and is present in young as well as older felines. When the tooth begins to resorb, it exposes the painful nerve tissue of the tooth.
- Dental trauma can occur at any time. Dental trauma is most commonly due to chewing on hard objects such as bones and antlers. Frequently, the pulp cavity is exposed, causing chronic discomfort and providing a portal of infection to the jawbones. Choosing safe chew toys for our canines is essential to their oral health.
- Oral tumors account for 6% of all cancer in dogs. Fifty percent or more of oral tumors can be malignant. Many pets will adapt and continue to go through each day without much complaint about conditions that would send us running to the hospital. It is up to us to advocate for their oral health.
Veterinary Dentist in Loveland, CO
Dogs and 42 teeth and cats have 30 teeth in comparison to humans, which have 30 teeth. The oral cavity must have a detailed evaluation with each annual or biannual exam to identify pathology and keep a happy quality of life. At Animal Dental Care and Oral Surgery, our goal is to provide a pain-free and healthy mouth. We understand how vital it is to the welfare of man’s best friend of the dog and cat variety. Call us today at Animal Dental Care and Oral Surgery to evaluate your pet’s oral health needs.