Pet Dental Care for All Your Companion Animals
Veterinary dental care for companion animals is certainly important, and we make it as easy as possible for owner and animal alike. Typically, your pet will receive a thorough oral exam at every checkup. As part of a complete wellness plan, at your initial wellness exam we work with you to determine the best dental care program for your animal.
If you raise horses, you should know that what and where your horse eats will affect the animal's teeth. Different horses require different types of care, and equine activities and lifestyle will influence your horse's dental care requirements. We will be happy to discuss your equine dental needs and create a plan tailored to your animal and lifestyle.
For farm or herd animals, such as cattle or goats, we will discuss your needs and options during our farm visit, and create a plan that works for you. Sullivan Veterinary Clinic strives to meet all of your animal care needs, from pet to working animal to the management of your herd.
The two critical components to veterinary dental care are:
- Oral examinations
- Dental cleanings
Veterinary dental care for companion animals begins early in life as the teeth come in and eating habits form. As your pet ages, we look for developmental problems, the accumulation of plaque and tartar, periodontal disease, and oral tumors.
While veterinarians can perform a basic oral examination on patients that are awake, a short-lasting anesthetic is sometimes required for a thorough examination and dental cleaning. The process may consist of the following:
- Pre-anesthetic exam—This exam may include blood, urine, and x-ray tests to check for any dangerous heart, kidney, or other conditions.
- Anesthesia monitoring—We monitor and record your pet's vital signs, such as body temperature, heart rate, and respiration.
- Dental radiographs—We may take radiographs or x-rays of the teeth.
- Scaling and polishing—We use instruments similar to human dentists to remove plaque, smooth out any scratches in the tooth enamel, and even polish teeth with a special paste.
- Fluoride and sealants—We may apply an anti-plaque substance, such as a fluoride treatment or a barrier sealant, to help strengthen, desensitize, and decrease plaque build-up on teeth.
Home Dental Care for Your Pet
You play an important role in your pet's dental health, through both veterinary dental care and regular home dental maintenance. Quality foods, appropriate play toys, and a simple home teeth cleaning regime will go a long way toward preventing serious oral or dental problems in your pet.
Pets can live longer, healthier lives with these precautions—proper dental care may add up to 5 years to your pet's life. Talk to us at your next visit about developing an easy-to-manage dental care plan for your pet, or contact us for more information.