Why should you worry about your pet’s teeth?
It’s as true for our pets as it is for us.
In human medicine, periodontal disease has been proven to be linked to many disease processes. Based on studies done by the American Veterinary Dental Society, 85% of adult pets have some stage of dental disease. The bacteria found in the plaque and tartar can also cause harmful effects to our pet’s heart, lungs, kidneys and liver. If left untreated, this infection causing bacteria will lead to issues in the mouth like gingivitis, bleeding gums, excessive drooling, tooth decay, root infections, bone loss, abscesses, tooth mobility, and even tooth loss.
Almost all dogs and cats will continue to eat no matter what ailments they may be experiencing. This is true for one simple reason – the instinct of survival. To better relate, put yourself into their situation. Imagine if you were stuck on a deserted island with a broken or abscessed tooth. Would you stop eating? Certainly not! You would continue to eat, drink, breathe and live day to day. You would not be the healthiest or most comfortable person in the world, but you would learn how to live with it — and that is what our pets do. They learn how to live with it because they do not have a choice. They live in a world in which they cannot express themselves through words, but rather actions. So although they may not be able to tell us that one of their right lower molars is moving, they may instead choose to eat their food on the left side of their mouth. Still others may opt to swallow their food whole, shy away from dry food altogether, or simply prefer not to chew on their toys. It is up to you as a responsible pet parent to provide adequate medical attention, which includes proper dental care.
As with everything in life, preventative maintenance is much easier (and less expensive) than medical treatment. By doing regular home care and routine professional dental cleanings you can help prevent periodontal disease or diagnose it before it advances. This will save your pet from the pain and systemic harm dental disease can cause.