Why Your Pet's Bad Breath Is Probably Bad News
Here at Roundwood Vets we believe in the power of pet dentistry! Your pet’s teeth should be checked at least once a year by your veterinarian for early signs of a problem and to keep your pet’s mouth healthy. We actually offer free dental check ups because we believe it’s so important. But why do we think it’s so important? Here’s some info for you to chew on! (See what we did there?)
Is It More Of A Dog Or A Cat Problem?
It doesn’t matter whether you have a cat or dog, dental disease doesn’t discriminate. And whilst we might be inclined to say about our own dental pain ’Oh it’s just a bit of toothache’, untreated dental disease in our pets can lead to awful outcomes such as heart disease or kidney failure.
Why Should I get My Pet Checked?
Research shows that after pets reach 3 years old, 91% of dogs and 85% of cats were experiencing some kind of tooth disorder. With a shocking 7 out of 10 pets experiencing a painful mouth! One reason to get your pet checked is because dental problems are very common, so there’s every chance your pet could be suffering in silence.
Another common problem pets can have is the failure of baby teeth to be shed. As the adult teeth come through, the retained baby teeth can affect the positioning of the adult teeth and actually damage them. Food can also become trapped- between the new adult teeth and the problematic retained baby tooth, resulting in an inflamed gum line, infection and serious damage to the normal adult tooth.
The best reason for a pet to see the vet for a dental health check up is because we will check for many abnormalities, such as abscesses within the oral cavity. These occur when tartar (a deposit that forms when plaque hardens on the tooth) and infection develop below the gums. The bacteria in the tartar attacks the surrounding tissue, which results in pain, inflammation and infection. Pus then builds up and can form a painful abscess. If this goes untreated, teeth will eventually loosen and fall out. It’s a process that is extremely painful and can last for months and sometimes years.
We also check for mouth cancers which are quite common in pets too and always seem to cause terrible breath.
Signs Of Dental Disease
● Bad breath
● Broken or loose teeth
● Extra teeth or retained baby teeth
● Teeth that are discoloured or covered in tartar
● Abnormal chewing, drooling, or dropping food from the mouth
● Reduced appetite or refusal to eat
● Pain in or around the mouth
● Bleeding from the mouth
● Swelling in the areas surrounding the mouth
Some pets become irritable when they have dental problems, and any changes in your pet’s behaviour should prompt a visit to your veterinarian. Please always be careful when evaluating your pet’s mouth, because an animal in pain may bite. Take is nice and slow and gently flip up the lip to look more closely and never put your fingers in your pet’s mouth. When you do the examination and If you notice any of the above, get your pet booked in with us.
This all sounds really scary! And sadly, untreated dental problems will reduce both the quality and quantity of life for your pet.
But there is good news!
A lot of these problems are preventable or treatable. So don’t delay. Take advantage of our free dental check ups.We’re here for any concerns you may have. And remember that happy healthy pets need happy healthy mouths!