Pet Dental Care at Best Friends Animal Hospital & Pet Resort
Whether you own a dog who loves to chew anything and everything, or you're owned by a cat who carries everything from toys to kittens using her mouth, you can understand the need to protect your pet's dental well-being. An animal's teeth, gums, and oral cavity are prone to many kinds of injuries and chronic issues, limiting that animal's ability to chew and/or even threatening his life. Fortunately, your pet is among friends at Best Friends Animal Hospital & Pet Resort, your Swansea source for top-quality pet dental care.
Teeth, Gums, and General Oral Health for Pets
Sometimes a dental problem in a pet can be relatively easy to spot. For instance, if your pet is pawing at his head, refusing to eat, or showing other signs of pain, you can look inside his mouth for swollen or bleeding gums, pus formation, a foul smell, or obviously broken teeth. In many cases, however, the disease only involves the tooth root which is hidden below the surface of the gum, making it elusive to detection. Tooth damage can let bacteria infiltrate the tooth and jawbone, causing painful abscesses and possibly moving from the jaw to the heart or other organs. Bacteria are also the cause of the most common pet dental problem: periodontal disease.
Yet another threat to your pet's dental health, and one that can be much harder for owners to notice, is oral cancer. Oral cancer can grow rapidly, causing serious damage to the oral cavity. If it spreads to other tissues, it can also prove fatal.
Our Skilled Vet Team Can Detect and Treat Dental Issues
Entrust your pet's dental wellness to our skilled vet team at Best Friends Animal Hospital & Pet Resort. We emphasize preventative dental checkups and X-rays of the teeth and jaw that allow us to diagnose any problems your pet may be developing in time to provide effective treatment, from infection-fighting antibiotics to extraction of seriously damaged teeth and surgery to remove oral cancer. We can also clean all the tartar off of your pet's teeth, reducing the threat of periodontal disease. We can even provide home care recommendations to help you watch out for dental issues and keep your pet's mouth healthier.
Keeping your pet’s teeth healthy is very similar to keeping your teeth healthy. The goal is to combine oral hygiene (at home cleaning) and preventative professional teeth cleaning and to address any disease early before it worsens and spreads. Having your pet’s teeth professionally cleaned, polished and treated with fluoride is a key component. Since your pet’s diet, frequency of home care, breed, age, and genetics can all play roles in how fast dental disease progresses, we tailor the frequency of these cleanings to each pet’s individual needs. Dental x-rays provide your veterinarian with valuable information on conditions that cannot be detected other ways. At Best Friends, we use state-of-the-art digital x-ray equipment. This allows us to get very high quality information and to do it very quickly. Because we can obtain the highest quality images quickly, your pet will need less time under anesthesia.
Do Your Pet's Teeth Need a Swansea or Saint Clair County Veterinarian?
If your pet's teeth are overdue for examination by an experienced Swansea or Saint Clair County veterinarian, we're here to help. Call Best Friends Animal Hospital & Pet Resort at (618) 222-9860!
Our staff can help you determine the best hygiene approach for your pet’s individual needs. We can recommend chew toys and treats that can help minimize the buildup of plaque and tartar. There is even a special diet that we carry made by Purina called DH® (dental health) that promotes healthy teeth.
OraVet® is another product that works very well for a lot of pets. It is a sealant that prevents plaque (and therefore bacteria) from binding to the teeth. It also acts as a bandage to protect the gums and enhance healing. Once your pet’s teeth have been professionally cleaned (this is a prerequisite as the teeth need to be dry & completely free from plaque), the OraVet is applied. Two weeks later, you start applying the gel to the teeth on a weekly basis. (The Home Care Kit is purchased separately & one kit will last from 8-16 weeks.) This product is especially great for those of us who can’t brush our pet’s teeth, though it can be used with brushing for even better results. And it is also great for those pets whose teeth are just prone to dental disease. Although OraVet will not eliminate the need for cleanings, it will dramatically increase the time before another cleaning is needed! It is strongly recommended by the American Veterinary Dental Association.
Please schedule your pet’s dental cleaning now as appointments are limited and made on a first-come first-served basis. If you have already scheduled your pet’s procedure, you may go to our forms section on the website to either print and bring in or fill out and submit online the Anesthesia Consent Form & the Dental Options Form.