Comprehensive Dental Care for Cats & Dogs
Routine dental care is a key component of your cat or dog's oral and overall health. Unfortunately, though, most pets don't actually receive the oral hygiene they require in order to keep their gums and teeth healthy throughout their life.
At our South Lebanon veterinary hospital, we provide complete dental care for your pet, from basics such as dental exams, teeth cleanings and polishing, to dental x-rays and surgeries.
We also make a point of providing education to pet owners about pet dental health and good dental care practices at home.
Dental Surgery in South Lebanon
We know that finding out your pet required dental surgery can be an overwhelming prospect. We strive to make this process as tress-free as possible, both for you and your pet.
We will do everything we can to make sure that your pet's experience with us is as comfortable and easy as possible. We will breath down each step of the process with you in detail before beginning the procedure. This includes both pre-and post-operative care.
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 checkups with your dentist, your cat or dog should come in for a dental examination at least once every year. Pets who may be prone to dental health issues may need to come in more often than that.
Little Miami Veterinary Services 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.
- Bad breath
- Tartar buildup
- Discolored teeth
- Loose and/or broken teeth
- Bleeding from the mouth
- Pain or swelling in or around the mouth
- Reduced appetite or refusal to eat
- Extra teeth or retained baby teeth
- Abnormal chewing, drooling, or dropping food from the mouth
A thorough pre-anesthetic physical assessment will be completed for your pet before the dental exam.
We will take urine and blood samples for analysis to make sure it is safe for your pet to undergo anesthesia. Extra diagnostic tests, like ECG or chest x-rays, may also be required.
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) and x-rays are taken. We then apply a fluoride treatment to each tooth.
The last step is to apply a dental sealant to your pet's teeth in order to prevent the buildup of plaque on the enamel of your pet's teeth. If we detect advanced periodontal disease, we will develop a treatment plan and speak with you about it.
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 humans, when animals eat, plaque sticks to their teeth and can build up into tartar if not brushed away regularly.
This may cause infections in your pet's mouth, tooth decay, gum disease and even lost or missing teeth. Because of this, routine dental care is key to preventing pain and disease in your pet's mouth.
- How can I tell if my pet has oral hygiene issues?
DId you know that your pet's behavior may actually be an indicator of oral health problems? If your pet is experiencing discomfort or pain because of an oral health issue, they may drool excessively—and the drool may contain blood or pus, paw at their mouth, yawn more than usual,. grind their teeth or cease properly grooming themselves.
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?
Besides causing problems ranging from cavities and bad breath to severe periodontal disease, oral health issues and conditions can lead to disease in the liver, kidney, heart, and other areas throughout your pet's body.
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.
Our vet will clean the tartar and other debris from your dog or cat's mouth. If they find any cavities, gingivitis or any other oralh health conditions that require treatment, they will explain them to you and provide some advice on next steps.
In some cases, surgery will be needed to treat serious conditions. Your pet will be provided with anesthesia before their dental procedure to ensure they are comfortable and do not experience any pain. However, special care will be needed 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.
Do not allow them to chew on things that will damage their teeth, such as bones, toys or objects that are too hard. Always contact your vet with any questions or concerns regarding 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.
Just like the anesthesia provided the anxious or nervous patients at a human dentist, our South Lebanon veterinary team provides anesthesia to our patients before performing a dental procedure. This causes your pet less stress and let sus x-ray and treat their mouth and other oral structures as required.