Did you know dental disease is the most common disease seen by veterinarians: 70–85% of pets over the age of 2 have some form of dental disease?
How does dental disease occur?
1) Dental disease is more common in older pets.
2) Small dogs are more likely to have overcrowded or misaligned teeth that are difficult to keep clean, making them more prone to dental disease.
3) Feeding sticky foods (canned/wet diet) can lead to more rapid build up of tartar.
Ways you can tell your dog/cat has periodontal disease:
1) Bad Breath
2) Red or swollen gums
3) Yellow/brown crust near gum line (tartar)
4) Loose or missing teeth
5) Discomfort when mouth/gums are touched
6) Decreased appetite or weight loss due to difficulty eating
7) Reluctant to chew on toys
Risks of leaving periodontal disease untreated:
1) Tartar can push gums away from the teeth. This allows the teeth to loosen in their sockets, in turn introducing infection. This can cause teeth to loosen and fall out, or require extraction.
2) When oral infection sets in this results in gingivitis (inflammation of gums), tonsillitis (inflammation of tonsils) and pharyngitis (sore throat). Although antibiotics can be helpful in decreasing the bacteria, it is not a long-term solution. The tartar will require removal.
3) Infection in the mouth has potential to be picked up by the blood stream affecting major organs such as the kidney’s, liver, lungs, nervous system and heart.