Your Pet’s Dental Health

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Did you know that it’s important to keep your pet’s teeth and gums clean? Poor dental health could cause other health problems to arise; poor dental health could even signal other health issues within the body. It’s important to have your vet check your pet’s teeth and gums at least once every year.

In addition to yearly visits, it’s important to take your dog or cat to the vet to have his or her teeth and gums inspected if you notice one or more of the following symptoms: Excessive bad breath even when the pet’s teeth and gums have been cleaned, broken or loose teeth, teeth that have become excessively stained and covered in tarter, behavior that includes abnormal chewing or excessive drooling and uncharacteristically dropping food from his or her mouth, reduced appetite, bleeding, and swelling around the gum line or on the tongue.

It’s also possible for a pet to develop cavities and periodontal disease. They could also suffer from abscesses in the mouth, infected teeth, damage from misalignment, or even palate defects. To be safe, any uncharacteristic changes in your pet’s behavior with food or physical changes within his or her mouth should be inspected by your veterinarian.

There are ways to keep your pet’s teeth cleaned. No, not every pet has the personality to enjoy a tooth brushing session, but with a little practice that’s bolstered by the good habits of obedience, it’s possible to have most any pet resisting his or her urge to break away from the toothbrush. To brush your pet’s teeth, use a wetted soft-bristled toothbrush and scrub the surfaces of your pet’s teeth.

There are pet toothpastes for sale, but it may be a good idea, at first, to simply scrub your pet’s teeth and gums delicately with a toothbrush wetted with water. When your pet becomes accustomed to the brushing, which should be done twice weekly—a once-daily brushing is not necessary—and you want to use a toothpaste, speak with your veterinarian about the effectiveness of the product before you use it.

Hopefully your pet’s teeth and gums will stay healthy and vibrant throughout his or her life. For all your pet’s other grooming needs, your expert groomer at Groomingdale’s is ready to help.