Canine and Feline Oral Care at Irondequoit Animal Hospital
Proper dental care is essential to your pet’s health and well-being. If teeth and gums are not properly cared for, the consequences can be far worse than cavities. Bacteria from plaque-related teeth and gum issues can spread throughout the body and cause infections, or even heart disease.
Oral Assessments at Every Checkup
As part of your pet’s regular examinations, they will receive a complete oral assessment to reveal dental problems or diseases in the mouth. This will help the vet determine whether a professional cleaning is needed.
Periodontal disease is a painful and progressive bone loss caused by infection. While this condition can be treated and controlled, there is no cure. This disease is preventable with regular dental care. Did you know that maintaining a healthy mouth can add 2–5 years to your pet’s life?
Up to 85% of pets are affected by periodontal disease by the time they are three years old. This is why proper cleaning of teeth and gums is vital.
Young pets can be trained to accept normal brushing and cleaning at home. This requires time and patience, but we can help to educate you on the proper procedures for keeping your companion’s teeth and gums healthy and clean.
Anesthesia and Monitoring
Pets often have to be given anesthesia to keep them calm and cooperative. Advancements in technology make anesthesia quite safe. We use the same procedures we would during surgery to keep your pet breathing properly and to maintain normal blood pressure.
We monitor your pet the entire time to make sure that there are no problems and that they remain comfortable. We make sure pets stay at a healthy anesthetic level, and we will quickly respond to any concerns.
While under anesthesia, we will perform a complete oral examination and will remove surface tartar, or calculus, using both hand scaling and ultrasonic techniques. We then remove tartar and plaque from under the gums.
Finally, we polish and smooth out the tooth enamel to help resist future build-up and keep your pet’s teeth bright and strong. This process is easy and painless for your pet, who will be kept comfortable and calm the entire time.
Full mouth X-rays are taken with every dental cleaning and oral assessment. While your pet is under anesthesia, X-rays will be taken to make sure that there is no bone or tooth disease present. If we discover that issues are present, the X-ray can help us determine the proper course of treatment.
Occasionally, a tooth is damaged and needs to be repaired or removed. Cavities are extremely rare in pets, but fractured teeth in dogs are common. These fractures can easily be repaired with a dental resin. If a tooth needs to be extracted, the process is routine and safe. We can address a variety of tooth issues, including:
- Fractured teeth
- Bonded sealants
- Tooth reabsorption in cats
We will be there throughout the entire process of recovery for your pet, provide follow up care by monitoring vitals, management of pain, and ensure that everything is coming along as expected.
Pain management can include a variety of methods including nerve blocks, splash blocks (local anesthetic in the tooth socket) and injectable medication. While your pet recuperates at home, your veterinarian can prescribe analgesic medications to help.
On the Web
AVMA TV has several videos that are excellent resources for pet oral care:
Other great pet dental care resources include:
- Duncan’s day of Dentistry
- Dental Bulletin Board
- Link to WebMD instructional slideshow on pet tooth brushing
- WebMD ten steps to dental health for cats
- Cornell University feline dental care video
If you have any questions about your pet’s dental health, please contact us. We will be happy to answer any questions or concerns.