How often do you brush your own teeth? Most people brush their teeth at least twice daily to remove plaque. Every 6-12 months most people visit their dentist to have a thorough cleaning done and check for any changes or problems that may be occurring in their mouth.
What about your dog or cat? They likely see their veterinarian for their annual exam each year, and their mouth will be examined, but most dogs don’t say ‘aah’ when we ask. We also aren't as diligent in brushing or pet’s teeth as we are with brushing our own, but plaque and tartar build up in your dog and cat’s mouths too!
Within a few hours of brushing, plaque starts to form on your pet’s teeth. By brushing on a daily basis you can remove the plaque and prevent it from accumulating on your pet’s teeth. Without brushing, plaque can accumulate until it starts to form hard tartar. Once hard tartar accumulates it is more difficult to remove and may require your pet to have a professional dental cleaning under general anesthesia.
We want to be able to stop the plaque from developing into hard tartar on your pet’s teeth. There are different ways to do this, but the most effective will be daily brushing of your dog or cat’s teeth. The mechanical action of the brush on your pet’s teeth along with the added help of pet-safe toothpaste will break down the layer of plaque on your pet’s teeth. Without this plaque, there is no substrate for tartar to harden onto your pet's teeth.
See the diagram at the end of this post for tips on getting your pet to accept brushing.
Nothing will replace the benefits of daily brushing, but if brushing your pet’s teeth is a battle, talk to your veterinarian about dental diets and other alternatives that may better suit your pet.Kibble diets will be more beneficial than canned food diets, and there are veterinary diets that are made specifically for dental health. We can help you find the best dental home care for your cat or dog.
Weekends, Holidays and After-hours we are available 24 hours daily 365 days a year at our location for local service by your veterinary team. Please call our office in case of emergency.
Please note - Weekend, Holiday and After-hour service is offered only to current clientele who have not transferred their files to another facility and whose animals are a patient of our practice that has been examined by one of our doctors in the past 24 months.
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Egan Fife Animal Hospital