Is dental care important for our pets? The answer is, absolutely. Imagine not brushing your teeth or going to the dentist, how your own teeth would be. Many people are very hesitant about dental care in animals because many dogs years ago did not have dental care and did just fine. The thing is, many of these dogs suffered from tooth loss, tooth pain and infection that went on without treatment.

As humans, we see the benefit of brushing daily and dental visits because we can experience and express the pain we are feeling. Dogs do not show pain as humans do. Many times they are still eating, running around and not even pawing at their face. Which you will notice is a foul smell and when you lift their lip you can see the tartar and gingivitis in their mouth.

So why is dental care important?

Besides resolving the pain and infection in your dog’s mouth there are other issues that can be caused by dental disease.

Heart Disease

Animals can get heart disease from severe dental disease. The bacteria in the mouth can actually travel to the heart and cause permanent damage.

Liver Infections

Animals can get liver abscesses or infections. The liver filters everything so the bacteria is going through the liver. This can require intensive care that can be financially draining.

Sepsis 

They can also become septic from it. The bacteria can get into the bloodstream and they become septic from it. This requires intensive care and animals may not survive.

Bone Infections

Animals can get bone infections, which require antibiotics and x-rays to monitor. This infection can actually break their jaw and if your pet gets a dental procedure performed with their veterinarian, removing a severely infected tooth with an infected jaw can lead to it breaking also.  This is very painful for animals.

So how do you take care of your pet’s teeth so these complications don’t occur?

The best thing you can do is brush your dog’s teeth every day. This is the best way to keep your animals mouth from getting bad dental disease.

Use dog approved dental toothpaste. Human toothpaste is meant to spit out while the dogs will swallow the toothpaste. Human toothpaste contains fluorides and detergents that animals should just not swallow. The added benefit is dog toothpaste is flavored to their liking.

Getting a toothbrush for a dog is also important. Human toothbrushes can sometimes be too hard for a dog’s gums. You can also use a finger brush to help brush your dog’s teeth.

There are also other great options for dental care. There are treats, chew toys and other greats options to consider.

Dental cleanings as needed are also very important. These dental cleanings are done under general anesthesia to make sure that their teeth are properly evaluated and scaled.

If you are concerned about your pet’s teeth then talking to your veterinarian is very important.