Your pet’s teeth are vital for them to live a healthy and happy life, however they are one of the most under cared for aspects of many pet’s health. Up to 85% of all pets have periodontal disease by the time they are 3 years of age.
Periodontal disease is a progressive disease of the supporting tissues surrounding the teeth and the main cause of early tooth loss. It is the result of bacteria collecting on the teeth and forming plaque, which bonds with the saliva and within a few days forms tartar. Tartar is a hard substance that adheres to the teeth and requires a professional veterinary dental cleaning to remove. As the bacteria works its way under the gums, it not only causes gingivitis, which is an inflammation of the gums but it also harms the supporting tissue around the teeth, which leads to tooth loss (periodontitis). Gingivitis and periodontitis combined is what is referred to as periodontal disease.
Professional dental cleanings are the only way to remove the tartar from your pet’s teeth and clean under the gum line to ensure the supporting tissues stay healthy around their teeth. These cleanings can reverse gingivitis but the damage done by periodontal disease is irreversible.
There is, however, a way that you can slow down the progression of the disease or help prevent it all together, which is diligent at-home dental care paired with regular veterinary cleanings. Providing your pet with regular dental care like daily dental chews or teeth brushing are a great way to help keep their teeth and mouths healthy. When your pet comes in for its regular veterinary visit please ask us about at-home dental care and we will discuss the various options available and help you decide what will work best for you!