Friday, February 13, 2015

Pet Pointers: Pet Dental Health

It’s February, love is in the air and it’s time for some smooching! But bad breath on any Romeo, including Fido, can be a turn-off – or mean there’s something foul going on in the mouth.
Dental disease is the most common disease affecting pets: According to Banfield Pet Hospital’s State of Pet Health Report, more than 90 percent of dogs over the age of 3 suffer from dental disease. 
Dental disease in pets can lead to life-threatening conditions if left untreated. When severe, it can lead to bacterial infections. We have also seen a correlation between dental disease and chronic diseases of the heart, kidneys and liver, and even organ failure. It is important to learn, recognize and regularly check for the signs of dental disease/poor oral health – not only during National Pet Dental Health Month (February), but all year long. 
Symptoms of dental disease may be hard to notice, so it’s important for pet parents to become familiar with the signs to avoid major health problems.
Early Symptoms of Dental Disease Include:
  • Bad breath
  • Yellow, brown, loose or missing teeth
  • Red or swollen gums
  • Discoloration or tartar on the teeth
  • Difficulty chewing or decreased appetite
I had a chance to interview Banfield Veterinarian Dr. Andrea Sanchez about the problem of dog dental disease and what pet owners can do to help prevent it.  She outlined what to include in a dental care program, including demonstrating the “Flip, Check, Treat” regimen to protect against dental disease, and a daily home treatment that will help maintain healthier teeth and gums for your precious pooch.

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