Your teeth go through a lot and so do your pets. That’s why taking care of them is very important to prevent future problems. Poor oral care can cause pain, decreased appetite and is a common source of infection.
There are many conditions associated with poor oral health - gingivitis, bad breath, periodontal disease and the loss of the tooth itself.
Plaque is a pale yellow layer of bacteria that forms on teeth naturally throughout the day.
Tartar is a dental calculus which is a complication of plaque. Tartar gives an unhealthy grey/ brown look to the teeth and can lead to further complications.
Gingivitis is a disease of the gum and is an infection caused by germs. It can occur when there is a buildup of plaque on the teeth and gums and can give the gums a puffy red appearance.
The main signs that you will notice are bad breath (this is most likely the first sign you will notice), reluctance to eat or a difficulty in chewing. You may even notice the teeth themselves have an unhealthy colour or you may notice some teeth are missing.
If you see any of these signs give us a call on 0118 987 2294 for a dental check up.
HOW TO BRUSH YOUR PETS TEETH
When attempting to start brushing your pets’ teeth, wait until they are completely relaxed and keep the initial brushing times very short. Make sure to use a pet tooth brush as these are designed to have angled bristles for brushing along the gum line. Always use a pet toothpaste flavoured for their palate and ensure never to use human toothpastes as they contain ingredients that may be harmful to your pet.
Start by getting your pet used to being held and gently run your finger over their lips to get them used to the sensation. This should be attempted once a day for at least a week and after each session, make sure to give your pet lots of fuss and a treat so they feel rewarded and associate it with a good experience. Once your pet is comfortable with this, you can start to introduce your toothpaste. Put a small amount on your finger and allow your pet to lick it off. If your pet enjoys the taste, try applying a small amount onto the outer surfaces of the teeth and gums to allow your pet to become accustomed to the sensation of something moving over their teeth. Once your pet is comfortable with this, you can start to introduce a toothbrush. Put a small amount of toothpaste on a toothbrush and start to brush over the teeth with a circular motion. Do this for just a few seconds, and then give your pet a break and a reward.
When it comes to looking after your pets’ teeth, there are other methods that can be implemented besides brushing. Feeding a dental specific diet which has specially designed kibble can help keep plaque and tartar at bay. Mouthwashes that can be added to your pets’ water bowl can be introduced or dental chews can be offered, however, beware that some dental chews can be very high in calories so this should be taken into account when feeding these.
Avoid dog toys and chews that are too hard and never encourage your dog to chew stones. These can lead to severe damage to your pets’ teeth and gums. Stones also carry an ingestion risk.
Following the huge success of our previous dental campaign, Shinfield vets are proud to announce that we will once again be offering your pets discounted dental treatment throughout the month of May!
We are offering all pets a FREE dental check with one of our vets and these appointments are available to book now! Our vets will be able to offer you advice on any dental surgery that might be needed or advise you if your pet may simply benefit from a scale and polish to remove plaque and tartar build up. All procedures performed in May will receive 15% off dental fees! Not only this, we are offering you a free dental information pack and 50% off selected bags of food when purchased within our promotional month.
If you would like to book your pet in for their FREE vet dental check or would like any further information, please don’t hesitate to give our friendly client care team a call on 0118 987 2294.