The Tooth Of The Matter
It shouldn’t sound surprising, but animal dental care is just as important as our own. As humans, we’re no strangers to the discomfort and pain we experience when our dental health goes unchecked. We wouldn’t want that for our fur babies, especially as they cannot exactly tell us fur parents what they feel.
Gone are the days when we thought brushing our dog’s teeth or getting them checked by a vet is impractical and unnecessary, if we even thought about it at all. Animal dental care wasn’t that much of a big deal until not too long ago.
Fortunately, our knowledge of veterinary dentistry and pet oral health has expanded and we now know that having good oral hygiene is important for our furry friends as it can lessen the smell of their breaths, improve their wellbeing and extend their lives.
It’s always a good idea to get in touch with a veterinarian and get their expert opinion (or do some mythbusting), but here are things you should look out for when it comes to animal dental care:
- Bad breath
- Pain while eating, loss of appetite
- Pain when touching the mouth
- Atypical drooling
- Obvious tartar buildup
- Worn, shattered, or discolored teeth
- Swollen jaws or other regions in the mouth
- Red or inflamed gums
- Bleeding from the mouth
- Pawing at the mouth
- Dropping of food from the mouth
- Swelling of the muzzle
These are symptoms that can lead to behavioural changes, lowered appetite, continuous bad breath, and severe disease, so it’s crucial that we don’t ignore them.
Dental care for pets is essential in fending off or slowing down the development of dental problems, and this begins with tooth brushing. While it’s not nearly as exciting as going to the park or swimming in the pool, it should be on top of every fur parent’s list. It takes a lot of time and commitment to make this a habit, but your pets will soon love you for it.
To get started, you should make it a point to do the following:
- Slowly introduce your pet to a toothbrush, making sure you give them rewards and treats.
- Start feeling their teeth with your finger, then you can begin using a toothbrush suited for your pet.
- Make brushing sessions short and sweet, you only need to clean the outer side of the teeth.
- Do not use human toothpaste as it contains ingredients that are harmful and toxic to pets.
- Most pet toothpastes contain enzymes that break down plaque, so be sure to use those.
As caretakers of our fur babies, it is our responsibility to keep their dental health in check. Even when we do the above and brush daily, we still need to get their teeth examined by a pet dentist as they still require thorough cleaning that normal brushing at home could not cover.
We at Animal Specialist Clinic are always ready to help with your pet’s dental needs. We have a fully functional and revolutionary IM3 dental suite which enables us to perform intricate and meticulous testing and scans to provide you with professional feedback.
Call us today on 04 343 5540 and book your appointment with us.