Turner Veterinary Clinic News
The American Veterinary Medical Association declared February as National Pet Dental Health Month several years ago to underscore the importance of oral healthcare. Did you know that up to 80 percent of dogs and 70 percent of cats develop periodontal disease by the time they are three years old? This is alarming because untreated periodontal disease can cause infection by spreading to other areas of the body. It can also cause your pet to lose teeth, making it more difficult for him to chew food and get the nutrition he needs to remain healthy.
Preventing Dental Disease in Dogs and Cats
Proper brushing and regular dental exams are one key to your pet’s oral health. The other is providing her with nutritious, species-appropriate food. The best pet foods have little or no added fillers. Additionally, they contain enough meat and protein to provide energy. Dental chews for dogs can help reduce plaque and tartar, but you should not give one to your dog in place of regular brushing. The toothbrush and toothpaste you buy should also be species-specific.
To brush your pet’s teeth, have him sit in a relaxed position and then follow these steps:
- Massage the cheeks for several seconds
- Introduce toothpaste by placing a small dab on your finger or a treat and allow her to lick it off
- Place a small amount of toothpaste on a toothbrush and place in your pet’s mouth without brushing
- When your pet appears comfortable with the process, brush the surface of one tooth at a time
- Retract the lips so you can reach the back molars
- Concentrate on the upper and outer molars if your pet only tolerates brushing for a short time
- Gradually increase total brushing time from a few seconds to two minutes
Be sure to praise your pet for any cooperation that you get. Eventually, she will come to accept toothbrushing as part of the daily routine.
When to Schedule an Immediate Appointment
Please contact Turner Veterinary Clinic right away if you notice any of these symptoms:
- Bleeding, red, or swollen gums
- Bad breath
- Drooling more than usual
- Hesitancy to eat
- Brown or yellow deposits on the teeth
These symptoms could indicate that your pet has an infection or another dental issue requiring prompt treatment.
Dr. Huelsbergen checks the condition of your pet’s teeth and gums at every preventive care appointment. He will recommend scheduling a follow-up appointment for any noted concerns.
As the holidays approach, you’ve probably switched into Santa-mode and started making a gift list and checking it twice. And like most pet parents, you probably buy your pets something extra special to thank your best friends for being oh-so-amazing! If you’re still deciding on the perfect present for your pets this year, we have some unbeatable ideas that your pets are sure to appreciate!
Don’t let your pet “fall” into some of the most common safety hazards we see this time of year. Fall may be the most beautiful season to some, but there are unique risk factors you can prepare for. If you’re anything like most people, you breathe easier this time of year.
Nothing hurts pet parents more than believing their pet is in pain. And we can’t blame them. It’s hard to know exactly how much pain or discomfort our lovable pets may be in since they can’t ask for aspirin or show us where it hurts.
August is here, bringing plenty of sunshine and joy. Do you know what else August provides pet parents? A chance to take a moment and meditate on your dog’s health. That’s right! August is National Immunization Awareness Month, or as we like to think of it: “National Protect Your Pets and Help Them Live a Long and Happy Life Month” - but that’s a bit of a mouthful!
Summer is here! Whether you have a hairless Sphynx or a hairy Husky, the heat this time of year can be dangerous for pets. Whatever the breed or size of your kitty or canine, there are a few things to keep in mind when it comes to keeping your pet safe and comfy as the mercury rises.