Dental Care for the Senior Pet
Dental disease is the most common disease we see daily with over 80% of pets affected. Periodontal disease involves the tissues below the gum line and includes the possibility of bone involvement, gum inflammation (gingivitis), and the spread of bacteria systemically to the heart, kidneys and liver. It can cause pain and discomfort leading to behavioral changes, loss of appetite, weight loss, bad breath, excessive salivation and pawing at the mouth. But our senior pets don’t have to suffer! With wellness exams every 6 months and home care by the owner, our pets can be free from dental disease.
Your pet may require a dental cleaning (prophy) on a regular basis. Anesthesia is required in order to thoroughly examine and clean the teeth and gums. Prior to this, routine lab work and possibly chest and/or abdominal radiographs are needed to help us detest any underlying disease before anesthesia is administered. While under anesthesia, we use the safest inhalant anesthetic available while constantly monitoring:
• Heart rate and ECG
• Blood pressure
• Oxygen content in the bloodstream
• Body temperature
• Carbon dioxide exhaled
• Anesthetic gas levels
Intravenous fluids are provided for all patients. Dental radiographs may be necessary to evaluate a fractured tooth or a deep gum pocket. We are able to extract teeth and perform root canals and restorative procedures if necessary. All pets are provided with thorough pain management when needed in the hospital and for home. This day procedure sends your pet home with a cleaner and healthier mouth.
Dental health in your senior pet can be maintained at home with numerous products individually tailored to you and your pet, such as:
• Hill’s Prescription Diet T/D or Science Diet Oral Care – proven to reduce plaque and tartar to maintain healthy teeth and gums.
• Toothpastes such as CET or OxyFresh – should be used 2-3 times weekly
• Water additives (OxyFresh)
• ProVSeal sealant – use 1-2 times weekly.
We are here to help you customize your home care to help keep your senior pet healthy.