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DENTAL CARE

There are 3 major things to look for in your pet's mouth:

  • Plaque
  • Tartar
  • Periodontal Disease

Plaque

Plaque is the first of the 3 issues to show up in your pet's mouth. Just as in humans, if not regularly treated, food and bacteria build up at the gumline and this is the "yellow" build up you may see on a visual check of your pet's mouth. Remember to look at the teeth in the back of the mouth (molars). Plaque is the easiest of the 3 disorders to treat. At home care by using the following products can prevent the later stages of dental disease.

Tartar

Tartar is the result of plaque developing further and forming a calculus. This yellow calculus will irritate the gums and cause inflammation and later gingivitis. You will notice your pet's gums are extremely red and inflamed. In addition, pet's develop halitosis, commonly known as bad breath. Once tartar takes hold you will most likely need to pay a visit to your vet's office for a clinical oral exam.

Periodontal Disease

Periodontal Disease developes if tartar is not well controlled. Essentially, the gums to separate from the teeth and this allow bacteria to get underneath the gums. Once bacteria has a foot hold underneath the gums, it is easier for it to enter the bloodstream and attack vital organs. Your pet's liver, kidney and heart are the major areas where bacterial infection can cause further damage. One of the common heart issues that come about due to bacterial infection is endocarditis. It is essential for your pet to see a veterinarian at this point.

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Prevention

Routine dental cleaning through your pet's veterinatrian is essential as well as regular cleaning at home through various products. Proper dental care can prolong your pet's life and help save on costly vet bills as your pet ages.

Along with skin disorders, dental disease is a leading cause of severe medical problem in pets. There are various brushes, chews and other products that can help your pet reduce tarter build-up and plaque.