Many owners comment to us about their pet's 'Doggy Breath' but may not realise how important dental health is to their pet's overall health and welfare.
Each time your pet visits our practice, our vets or nurses will check their mouth as part of their general clinical exam. In many cases they can reassure you that nothing is wrong and can offer preventative health advice. In other cases, they may advise treatment. If any of your pet's teeth appear to be loose, fractured, infected or there is high levels of tartar they may advise that your pet comes into the practice for surgical repair. In many cases the severity of a problem is not apparent until your pet is examined under anaesthetic and their teeth have been cleaned - they will not sit still for us to have as close a look as a human dentist! Often the full extent of the damage cannot be appreciated until your pet has had an X-ray of their head and jaws as tooth roots are deeply embedded in the bone. We have very special medical grade dental x-ray machines which few veterinary practices have, they are of the same quality as those human dentists use and allow us to get close views of individual teeth for complete assessment.
We strongly advise regular dental check-ups as dental disease is more than just a simple problem with your pet's smell or appearance. It can have a significant impact on your pet's health and can cause a large degree of pain. If dental problems are not noticed or ignored for a long time they can act as a source of bacteria that can then spread around the body and cause serious disease elsewhere.
Cats and small breeds of dog are particularly prone to dental problems. Visit www.petsmile.org for more information on why dental health is important to your pet.
Dental disease can take many forms, but there are some common signs that owners should be aware of:
There are many different techniques to prevent dental disease, these may not completely remove the risk of disease developing, especially in high risk pets, but they will reduce the likelihood of your pet needing dental procedures and associated costs.
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Dental treatment is performed under general anaesthetic as it allows our vets to fully examine an animal's mouth without pain or stress. A systematic examination of the soft tissues of the mouth is performed, followed by each tooth individually so that no problem is overlooked.
Damaged, loose teeth or those with severe gum recession are removed to prevent pain and infection. The remaining teeth are scaled and polished using ultrasound to reduce the speed at which plaque and tartar builds, keeping the teeth clean and white. Your vet may take biopsy samples of any suspicious lumps or ulcers in your pets mouth to see what is going on.
In cases of severe dental disease, your pet may be given a course of antibiotics before or after dental work to promote better recovery.
It should be remembered that these procedures are surgery and involve much higher costs and time than you may expect, we have high quality equipment and skilled surgeons to ensure that this work is done to an exceptional standard, as you would expect from any other type of surgery. We also use local anaesthetic nerve blocks if required to ensure our patients experience no pain or discomfort at all after surgery - this is the same protocol as used by human dentists but our patients are under general anaesthetic when this is done so they cannot feel the needle as you would. This is a very modern technique which we are happy to offer to our clients.
Monday 09.00 - 18.00
Tuesday 09.00 - 18.00
Wednesday 09.00 - 18.00
Thursday 09.00 - 18.00
Friday 09.00 - 18.00
Village Vets Centre Ltd
65 Quarry St
Tel.: 0151 428 8600
Tel.: 0151 428 8600