Dental Care

Pets have teeth too! And just like us, they are susceptible to tartar build-up and periodontal disease. Furthermore, infected gums and abscessed teeth can be sources of potential infection to the kidneys, liver and heart. We recommend an annual dental exam and teeth cleaning to preserve your pet’s healthy teeth and gums. Our dentistry services for dogs and cats include:

  • Ultrasonic Scaling of the teeth (to remove tartar)
  • Ultrasonic Polishing of the teeth (after scaling)
  • Dental Extractions as needed
  • Oral Surgery
  • Periodontal Disease
  • Endodontics
  • Gingival Tumor Removals
  • Gingival Flap Procedures
  • The most up-to-date methods of anesthetic, monitoring and pain management protocols

The Dental Procedure

Proper cleaning of the teeth requires complete cooperation of the patient so that tartar on the cheek and tongue sides of the teeth may be removed. A general anesthetic is used to facilitate doing a thorough job. The veterinarian will perform a physical exam prior to the procedure to check general health and heart function. However, because there is always the possibility that a physical exam alone may not identify all health problems, we recommend that pre-anesthetic blood tests be performed within 30 days of the procedure. We will use the information obtained from these tests to tailor an anesthetic protocol especially for your pet so that it will be as safe and comfortable as possible during the dental procedure. First a pre- anesthetic tranquilizer is given to your pet as well as an injection of antibiotics (to prevent any showering of bacteria into the blood stream during the dental procedure). Then the general anesthetic is administered and our trained technical staff will clean and polish the teeth under the supervision of our doctors and registered veterinary technicians. Next the doctor will examine the mouth for any signs of infected or loose teeth, gingival tumors, or other lesions. Once these issues have been addressed, the mouth is given a last rinse with an antiseptic solution. Your pet will awaken in our intensive care area under direct supervision, and will be monitored for any signs of pain or discomfort following the procedure.

Pre-Procedure Instructions

  • No food or treats after 8pm the night before the procedure
  • Check-in with the doctor between 7:30 and 9:00am on the morning of the procedure. The doctor will discuss discharge times and aftercare instructions.

Post-Procedure Instructions

Offer a light meal and water that evening, and return to normal feeding the next day
We will send pain medication home for your pet if we foresee that he/she will need them following the procedure. You can also monitor your pet for signs of pain or discomfort. Please contact us if you have any concerns or observe your pet exhibiting any of the following signs or behaviors:

  • Posture – tucking of abdomen, drooping head, arching back
  • Temperament – aggression, guarding of painful area, avoidance of social interaction, hiding, abnormal behavior
  • Movement – reluctance to move, prolonged lying or sitting, lameness, or acting tender, uncomfortable or restless
  • Appetite – decrease in food or water intake
  • Grooming – decrease in normal grooming habits OR excessive grooming or licking
  • Vocalizing – crying out or whining

An at-home dental care routine will help preserve your pet’s “pearly whites” between dental cleanings. We can help tailor an at-home routine for you and your pet:

  • Food, Treats and Chews - Feeding a dental diet, treats or chews to your pet on a regular basis will help to remove plaque and prevent bacteria as they chew
  • Rinses - Oral rinses and gels are easy to use
  • Brush - Brushing your pet’s teeth regularly with a toothbrush and pet tooth paste is the ideal way to take care of your pet’s teeth at home.
     
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