Clean Teeth, Happy Pets: Keeping an eye on their oral health

February is National Pet Dental Health Month

Sponsored by VCA Hawaii

February is National Pet Dental Health Month, and it’s a perfect reminder for pet owners to bring their furry friends in to get a better idea of their dental health during an oral exam.

Experts at VCA Hawaii recommend brushing your pet’s teeth with a veterinary-formulated toothpaste and mouthwash. It’s important to be mindful of certain ingredients such as xylitol, which can be toxic in large amounts. Veterinarians also recommend a routine oral examination at least once every year and every six months as your pet ages. Most pets will eventually need a good dental cleaning once a year, just as humans do.

Dental cleanings involve your pet going under general anesthesia. Veterinarians are able to clean up under the gum-line which is extremely important in ensuring that tartar and plaque build-up are removed. These allow harmful bacteria to enter your pet’s bloodstream and cause potentially serious health issues to vital organs such as the heart, kidneys, and liver.

While your pet is sleeping, dental radiographs can also be taken at that time. These are an essential part of your pet’s preventative health care and help to visualize potential or existing issues that lie beneath the gum-line. That then allows veterinarians to be proactive and take action before it becomes a painful experience for pets. Often times, doctors will find pockets of infection around tooth roots and sometimes that can track up to right beneath the orbit of a pet’s eye! They can also find fractured or diseased roots or even non-viable teeth.

VCA hospitals are proud to offer CareClub wellness plans. It has a robust PLUS plans available for adult and senior pets, which include dental cleanings and dental radiographs.

About VCA Hawaii:
VCA Hawaii strives to provide the very best in medical care, and the hospitals provide a full range of general, surgical and specialized care. This is how VCA Hawaii veterinarians would treat their own pets, and it offers nothing less than that to you and your pet. VCA Hawaii understands your pets are a big part of your family and will be there for you every step of the way when it comes to your pets’ health.

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