Best Friends Pet Care : The Dog Dish
Best Friends Pet Care : The Dog Dish

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2016

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Best Friends Pet Care : The Dog Dish

Tag Archives: Pet dental health month

Pet Dental Health Month – Periodontal Treatment

Brush Your Pet's TeethProfessional periodontal treatment is important to the health and well-being of dogs and cats. Poor oral health may directly affect an animal’s overall health. Recent studies have shown there is an association with advanced periodontal disease and heart disease further validating the importance of periodontal health. Other studies have shown similar implications for the relationship of periodontal disease to heart, liver and kidney disease in the dog.

The goal of periodontal treatment is not only eliminating the causes of periodontal disease but to stop the progression of disease.  Recognition of dental and oral disease, careful treatment planning, appropriate treatment modalities, and a quality dental hygiene program to prevent or at the very least, decrease the progression of periodontal disease are all important in the overall health of dogs and cats.

Professional Periodontal Cleaning is not an elective procedure!! It is the responsibility of the veterinarian and the entire hospital team to recognize the importance of dental and oral disease, to educate the client appropriately, to develop a treatment plan for each patient, and to offer all available dental services available to treat the pet and promote a complete oral health care plan. Professional Periodontal Cleaning must be done under general anesthesia with preoperative blood work, an intravenous catheter, fluid therapy and sound anesthetic monitoring. Due to the aresoloation of bacteria during the periodontal cleaning, each team member performing the periodontal cleaning should wear protective eye wear, surgical masks and gloves.  With the dog or cat under general anesthesia it will be easier to identify dental disease and abnormalities that otherwise would not be found while the patient is awake or only sedated. Dental radiographs need to be taken (only under general anesthesia) to identify disease such as bone loss that would not be discovered clinically. With those hospitals that have dental radiology capability, full mouth dental radiographs should be taken for all first time dental cleaning patients not only as a base line, but to identify any disease under the gum line that would otherwise go undetected.

Tags: Ask the Vet, Dogs, Health, Pet advice, Pet dental health month

Pet Dental Health Month – Periodontal Disease

Brush Your Pet's Teeth

Periodontal disease is the loss of the periodontal attachment apparatus (periodontal ligament, alveolar bone, cementum and gingiva). Since 75-85% of these structures are identified below the soft tissues of the oral cavity (e.g. gingiva, alveolar mucosa, and palatal mucosa), a thorough clinical subgingival evaluation and intraoral radiographs are required to assess, diagnose and treat periodontal disease.

Periodontal disease may be potentiated by, but not limited to, malocclusions, crowding and rotation of teeth, systemic disease, nutritional status, individual patient susceptibility, genetics, trauma, and increased tooth to jaw size ratios.

The clinical signs of periodontal disease are often hidden and insidious. Halitosis, gingivitis, supragingival plaque and calculus, reluctance to chew, head shyness, pawing at the mouth, dropping food, sneezing, nasal discharge, are clinical signs. Unfortunately, many of those clinical signs require astute client observation and/or careful questioning from the clinician. Most commonly, there may be no obvious clinical signs to the owner and untrained veterinarian.

Stages of periodontal disease:

Stage 1 – Marginal gingivitis with no attachment loss. Minimal plaque and calculus

Stage 2 – Moderate gingivitis, bleeding upon probing. More plaque and calculus     accumulation is present, especially in the gingival sulcus. Dental radiographs may show signs of up to 25% attachment loss and some horizontal bone loss may be evident.

Stage 3 – Moderate periodontal disease. Periodontal pockets may be present and dental radiographs may show signs of attachment loss between 25% and 50%. Teeth may become mobile. Vertical bone loss and infra-bony pockets may be present.

Stage 4 – Severe periodontal disease. Periodontal pockets greater than 9 mm. Attachment loss is greater than 50%. Significant infrabony pockets with very mobile teeth associated with severe halitosis and generalized stomatitis.

 

Tags: Ask the Vet, Cats, Dogs, Health, Pet dental health month, Pet health, Preventative pet care

Pet Dental Health Month – Preventative Care

Brush Your Pet's TeethPreventive care and client education is an important step to introducing, implementing and improving overall dental and oral medical quality in your practices.  Understanding the veterinary team’s (DVMs, veterinary technicians and assistants, receptionists, managers) role in preventing periodontal disease before pathology develops through the three keys to preventive dental care are critical steps to embrace. Suggestions for partnering with your clients to actively involve them in their pet’s oral home care, understanding client perceptions, providing confident and personalized recommendations, working as a team to change and improve the hospital culture will be addressed.

Clients play a key role in insuring the success and oral health of their pet.  Proper education of the client regarding the need for home care and teaching the client to brush and to start an effective home care routine is important. This begins at an early age when pets are puppies and kittens. The hospital staff needs to spend enough time with the clients, explaining the causes of periodontal disease, so they will understand why it is important to continue home dental care and to recognize when problems are present so that proper intervention can occur.

During the pet’s first visit, and then during subsequent visits when the puppy or kitten receives vaccinations, the mouth needs to be examined.  Signs of malocclusions, retained deciduous teeth, developmental problems such as cleft palate, trauma or fractured teeth should be identified.  Discuss with clients when and which deciduous teeth fall out and inform them that the best way to begin preventive dental care is to start brushing the teeth when the pet is young, so he/she will get accustom to brushing.

Tooth brushing is the most effective means to prevent plaque and subsequent calculus build up because it is the mechanical action of the brushing that is effective in reducing plaque accumulation. Pet dental products such as toothpastes, toothbrushes, finger pads, finger brushes and dental wipes are available and should be used. Human dental care products should not be used. Dental diets, exercise toys, rawhide strips, dental treats, and many other dental toys can help reduce and eliminate the buildup of plaque and calculus.   Family and pet compliance will determine the best dental home care required for each pet. Cow hooves, bones, hard plastic toys such as Nylabones can fracture teeth and should be avoided.

Tags: Ask the Vet, Cats, Dogs, Health, Pet advice, Pet dental health month, Preventative pet care
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