Did you know that dental problems are one of the most common medical issues our canine buddies face? Just like people, dogs can suffer from many different dental problems, including abscesses, infections, and broken or misaligned teeth. These issues are not only very painful for Fido, they can also lead or contribute to some very serious health problems. Below, a Thorold, ON vet discusses doggy dental woes.
Bad breath is one of the most common signs of doggy dental trouble. Fido’s breath may never be minty-fresh, but it shouldn’t leave you gagging, either. Other symptoms include excessive, bloody, or stringy drool; reduced interest in playing and chewing; grumpiness; visible swelling; bleeding gums; and tartar buildup. Your pooch may also take longer eating if his teeth hurt, or may start preferring softer foods.
Gum disease is a very widespread problem among dogs. By some estimates, over 80 percent of adult canines have this affliction! While gum disease is painless and asymptomatic at first, as it progresses, it can cause Fido’s teeth to loosen or even fall out. Also, because the infection can spread from your pet’s gums to his vital organs, gum disease can contribute to some dangerous health problems, like heart disease.
Brushing your dog’s teeth is one of the best things you can do to keep those choppers healthy. Start slowly, by gently massaging Fido’s teeth and gums with a finger. Once he accepts this, you can start using a doggy toothbrush and pet toothpaste. If your furry buddy isn’t having it, ask your vet for recommendations on using dental treats or chews. It’s also very important to make sure your pooch always has fresh water and suitable chew toys.
Fido’s choppers should be examined by a vet at least once a year. If your canine pal has icky tartar buildup, he may need a good deep cleaning. This will help fight bacteria and inflammation. Other issues, such as loose teeth, are handed on a case-by-case basis. When it comes to doggy dental care, cosmetic problems are not a big concern. Your pup will be just as cute with a crooked smile! The focus is on issues that can cause pain or lead to other health problems.
Do you know or suspect that your pet has dental trouble? Call us, your Thorold, ON animal clinic, today!