Did you know that dental issues are one of the most common problems we see in our canine patients? Oral care is just as important for dogs as it is for people, but it’s often overlooked, even by the most loving pet owners. A Louisville, KY vet discusses doggy dental care below.
Gum disease is one of the most common problems we see in our canine buddies. In fact, as many as 80 percent of dogs over the age of three are afflicted! This insidious disease is painless and asymptomatic in its early stages, just as it is with people. However, as it progresses, it can cause or contribute to some very dangerous health problems, such as heart disease. Cracked or broken teeth are also not uncommon in dogs. (This isn’t exactly a surprise, given that Fido uses his mouth to play, and often bites or chews hard objects.) Fido can also be afflicted by issues like overcrowding, infections, and misalignments.
Keep an eye out for signs of doggy dental woes. Bad breath is at the top of the list. Other red flags include stringy, ropy, or excessive drool; tartar buildup; bloody smears on toys and dishes; and swelling. You may also notice changes in your furry buddy’s behavior or eating habits. Fido may not feel very playful if his teeth hurt. He may also seem sad or withdrawn. If his teeth are really bothering him, he may dribble food, take longer eating, chew on one side of his mouth, or even leave his food unfinished. Call your vet right away if you notice any of these warning signs.
We recommend having your four-legged friend’s choppers checked at least once a year. This should start around the time Fido is about a year old. It’s worth mentioning that the point of treating dental issues in dogs isn’t to give your pooch a perfect smile or minty-fresh breath. It’s to address and correct issues that cause pain, infections, or other problems.
Your canine buddy’s dental health really begins at home. Brushing Fido’s teeth is the best way to keep those choppers healthy. If your furry pal won’t tolerate this, you also use products like dental-formula kibble, treats, and chews. Ask your vet for more information. As your Louisville, KY veterinary clinic, we’re dedicated to offering great veterinary care. Please contact us anytime!