Dental Month is coming in February! Barbara Braziel, DVM at Country Friends Veterinary Clinic, shares why dental care is important for our pets too.
Imagine your teeth if you never brushed them! That’s what your dog and cat’s mouth are like. Their mouths work the same way ours do. After a full day, if we haven’t brushed our teeth, a coating develops on them. This coating or “sweater” that develops on our teeth is comprised of a protein and sugar matrix. With time this hardens to a permanent layer on the teeth. Fortunately we brush the “sweaters” off of our teeth before it hardens. In our dogs and cats, without brushing their teeth, this layer hardens day after day and forms permanent tartar on their teeth. Once this is hardened, tartar can’t be brushed away. Now, think of how your gums hurt a little bit due to inflammation if you miss a brushing. Imagine years of not brushing, and the chronic inflammation and gingivitis our pets experience. This leads to difficulty eating, loss of teeth and loss of overall health. Additionally, the bacteria associated with gingivitis can lead to kidney and heart disease.
A dental cleaning on our pets is the same process as the dental cleanings we receive. Tartar is scaled off and then teeth are polished smooth to deter bacteria and tartar from reattaching. Dental cleaning is one step in ensuring good dental health for our dogs and cats. Daily brushing of our pet’s teeth will remove this sugary coating before it hardens. Ask us to show you the proper technique to brush your pet’s teeth. Dental chews, water supplements, oral gels and dental diets are other pieces of good dental health for the pets we love!
Dr. Barbara Braziel is passionate about providing the best care for your pet and encourages you to watch our Facebook for before and after photos of some of the Country Friends patients who have already benefited from a dental cleaning!