What Type of Dental Procedure Does My Pet Need?

posted: by: Animal & Bird Clinic Tags: "Clinic Specials" "News" 

Dental disease can affect our dogs and cats at any age, but it is most common as our pets enter middle age. Studies at the Veterinary Colleges of Ohio State and Cornell University have found that 85% of dogs and cats over the age of 6 years old have some form of dental disease.

Dental disease can be put into three main categories: gingivitis, tartar and pyorrhea. Gingivitis is inflammation of the gums. You can usually easily see this by the increase in pinkness of your pet's gums, especially at the gumline. Tartar is the accumulation of plaque on the teeth, usually starting at the gumline in conjunction with gingivitis. Pyorrhea is the most serious of the three conditions. It is pus in the mouth, usually between teeth and gums.

All three of these conditions require treatment, which can range from antibiotics to anesthesia, and a complete dental scaling or polishing. Teeth may need to be extracted or abscesses treated. The appropriate type of treatment is decided upon after a thorough oral examination.

At the Animal & Bird Clinic, we know how important dental care is to your pet’s healthier and longer life. More than just bad breath and painful tooth or gum conditions, harmful bacteria from these conditions can lead to dangerous health problems like heart, kidney and liver damage. We also know that no two pets are the same, nor are their dental needs. For that reason, we are proud to offer dental procedures tailored to your pet’s specific needs:

Full anesthetic dental procedures are offered when your pet requires moderate to severe treatments including extractions, masses or abscesses. The need for this is determined after a full comprehensive examination by one of our doctors. Procedures include pre-operative bloodwork, general anesthesia, nerve blocks, digital intraoral radiographs (x-rays), scaling, probing for any periodontal pockets, extractions if needed, sealants and full post operative care.

Dental Cleaning

Pets that need less intensive cleaning, no extractions, have sensitivity to anesthetics or are too fractious for non-anesthetic dentals can have their procedures done under sedation. This is similar to human dentists who do your dental work under “twilight sedation.” Pets are given intravenous sedation and a monitor is used to ensure the safety of your pet while the oral work is being performed.

Pet Before and After Dental Cleaning

NAD (Non-Anesthetic Dentistry) can be done when your Veterinarian determines that your pet requires a routine dental cleaning and scaling and has the temperament to allow the technician to complete the work without sedation or anesthesia. This procedure is a gentle way to remove tartar above and below the gum line. After the tartar has removed the teeth are gently machined polished with tasty toothpaste which includes fluoride specially made for cats and dogs. This also helps to protect your pet’s teeth after the cleaning is completed. This is our most popular option, with many of our clients opting to have this cleaning done every 1 to 3 months.

 Our doctors will thoroughly explain these procedures and when each is appropriate for your pet’s individual needs. Each type is tailored to the condition of your pet’s dental and oral condition. Because of the differences and what may be entailed, we are happy to provide written estimates to you if would like one. The most important thing is that you don’t put off taking care of your pet’s dental and oral needs. Regular dental care is as important for your pet as it is for you!