Comprehensive Dental Care for Cats & Dogs
Routine dental care is an incredibly important component of your dogs' or cats' oral and overall health. However, most of our companions don't actually receive the oral hygiene care they need in order to keep their teeth and gums healthy.
At our Carrollton veterinary hospital, we provide complete dental care for your pet, from basics such as dental exams, teeth cleanings and polishing, to surgeries.
Our vets also make a point of providing dental health education to pet owners about at-home dental hygiene and care for their dogs and cats.
Dental Surgery in Carrollton
We know that discovering your pet needs dental surgery can be an overwhelming thing. Because of this, we strive to make the dental care process as stress-free for you and your pet as possible.
Our vets will do everything we can to help make sure that your pet's experience with us is as comfortable and easy as possible We will walk through each step of the process with you in detail before your pet's procedure. This includes any preparations and post-operative care you will need to give to your pet surrounding their operation.
We offer jaw fracture repair surgeries, tooth extractions, and gum disease treatment for dogs and cats.
Pet Teeth Cleaning & Exams
Just like your own annual checkup with your dentist, your dog or cat should have a brief dental checkup at least once each year. Pets that are more prone to developing oral health issues may need to see a vet for a dental exam more often.
Carroll County Animal Hospital can assess, diagnose and treat dental health problems in cats and dogs.
If you notice any of the following symptoms in your pet, it's time for a dental checkup.
- Tartar buildup
- Loose and/or broken teeth
- Extra teeth or retained baby teeth
- Bleeding from the mouth
- Bad breath
- Pain or swelling in or around the mouth
- Reduced appetite or refusal to eat
- Abnormal chewing, drooling, or dropping food from the mouth
- Discolored teeth
A thorough pre-anesthetic physical assessment will be completed for your pet before the dental exam.
We will take blood and urine analyses to ensure it's safe for your pet to undergo anesthesia. Additional diagnostics, such as chest radiographs or an ECG may also be conducted.
Once your pet is under anesthesia, we will conduct a complete oral examination (tooth by tooth) and charting.
Next, the teeth are cleaned and polished (including under the gum line). We then apply a fluoride treatment to each tooth.
The final step is to apply a dental sealant to prevent plaque from attaching to the enamel. If advanced periodontal disease is found, the veterinarian will develop a treatment plan and discuss it with you.
Ideally, a follow-up examination will be scheduled two weeks after the initial assessment and treatment appointment.
During this visit, we will discuss implementing teeth brushing at home. We can also recommend products that can help improve your pet's oral health.
FAQs About Pet Dental Care
Here are some of the most frequently asked questions from our patients about pet dental care.
- Why do pets need their teeth cleaned?
Our pets can develop periodontal disease or tooth decay as a consequence of poor oral health.
Just like in people, when our pet eat they have plaque that stick to their teeth. This can build into harmful tartar if not regularly brushed away.
This can lead to infections in the mouth, periodontal disease, tooth decay, and even loose or missing teeth. That's why regular dental care is essential to preventing pain or disease in the gums.
- How can I tell if my pet has oral hygiene issues?
Did your know that your pet's behavior may be an indicator of oral health problems? If your pet is experiencing dental health issues, they will drool excessively (and this drool may also contain blood or pus) or you may notice your pet paying at their teeth or mouth. Your companion may also begin yawning more than normal, stop grooming sufficiently,or grind their teeth.
Other signs of oral health problems include bad breath, swollen gums, and tooth discoloration. Some pets may even suffer from pain that keeps them from eating. Read more about symptoms to the left under Pet Teeth Cleaning & Exams.
- What long-term problems can poor oral health potentially cause in my pet?
In top of causing health issues from bad breathe to cavities and periodontal disease, oral health issues and conditions may lead to diseases affecting your pet's liver, kidneys, heart and other internal organs.
Cysts or tumors may develop. Your pet may also not feel well in general (if you've ever had a toothache, you know how it can affect your mood!). In addition, diseases related to oral health conditions can shorten the lifespan of your pet and cause significant pain.
This is why regular dental care is so essential to animals' physical health and wellbeing.
- What happens during a pet teeth cleaning appointment?
During your pet’s regular oral exam, the vet will examine his or her mouth and look for oral health conditions or any symptoms needing treatment.
The vet will clean tartar and other debris from your cat's or dog's teeth. If cavities, gingivitis, or other conditions need to be addressed, the vet will explain these to you and provide advice on which actions you should take.
In some instances, dental surgery will be needed to treat serious conditions. Your pets will be provided with anesthesia before their dental procedure to make sure that they are comfortable and don't experience any pain. However, special care will need to be taken post-surgery.
If you notice any of these symptoms, schedule a dental appointment with us.
- What should I do at home to keep my pet’s teeth clean between dental appointments?
At home, you should brush your pet's teeth on a regular basis and give them dental chew toys. These will help eliminate plaque.
Don't allow your pet to chew on things that will damage their teeth like toys, bones or other hard objects. Always ask your vet if your have questions about your pet's oral health.
Veterinary Dentistry: Anesthesia & Your Pet's Oral Health
Cats and dogs do not understand what is going on during dental procedures, and will often react to dental procedures by struggling or biting.
Similar to the anesthesia that is provided to anxious or nervous patients by dentists, our veterinary team can provide anesthesia to each of our patients who are undergoing oral health procedures. This places far less stress on your pet and gives us to chance to run diagnostics and provide treatment as needed.