With the start of each new year comes dental awareness months for our pets. We humans are recommended to visit the dentist every 6 months for cleanings and teeth evaluation…and we brush our teeth twice a day, every day! For our feline and canine friends, though they don’t brush and floss as regularly, dental care is just as important. As part of your pet’s annual physical, we do an external dental examination to determine if your pet is in need of a dental cleaning. On average, about 85% of our pets older than four years have periodontal disease. “Perio” means around, and “dontal” refers to teeth. Periodontal diseases are infections of the structures around the teeth, which include the gums, periodontal ligament and alveolar bone.
Periodontal disease begins with plaque attachment to the surface of teeth. Plaque is an adhesive fluid that is composed of mucin and bacteria. If this plaque is not removed from the tooth surface, mineral salts combine with the plaque to form tartar on the teeth. The tartar/calculus and plaque is very irritating to the gums, allowing bacteria to survive under the gumline. The by-products of this bacteria eats away at the tooth support structures.
If you are concerned about your pet’s teeth, schedule an exam with us today! During January and February, all dental procedures also are 20% discounted!