Saving Smiles & Keeping Your Pet Healthy with Dental Care in Troy, MI

Nearly 80% of dogs and cats have some form of dental disease by the time they are 2 years of age, but your pet doesn’t have to be one of them! At Long Lake Animal Hospital in Troy, MI, we believe that dental care is just as important as routine physical exams and vaccinations. Like us, dogs and cats need regular oral exams and cleanings to prevent and treat periodontal disease and other oral issues. Left untreated, dental disease can be a significant source of pain and infection, and even impact important organs such as the heart and kidneys. Fortunately, most dental diseases can be prevented and/or effectively managed with regular veterinary care. Starting early is key—together with your veterinarian, you can help your pet avoid painful gum swelling and tooth loss and live a much happier, healthier life.

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If your pet has bad breath, they probably need an oral exam. Call us today at (248) 689-8899, or request an appointment online.

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Your Pet Might Have Significant Dental Disease If...

…they have bad breath. But that is only one sign of poor oral health in dogs and cats. There are other signs to look for as well, such as:

Red, swollen gums   •   Swelling of the face/muzzle   •   Receding gums   •   Broken or missing teeth
Yellow/brown teeth   •   Drooling   •   Having trouble eating   •   Sleeping more often   •   Not interested in playing

- Red, swollen gums
- Swelling of the face/muzzle
- Receding gums
- Broken or missing teeth
- Yellow/brown teeth
- Drooling
- Having trouble eating
- Sleeping more often
- Not interested in playing

But did you know that most pets with dental disease do not show any outward signs at all, even in the most severe cases? This is why it’s critical for your pet to see their veterinarian at least once a year for an exam. Your vet will be able to see (and possibly smell) if your dog or cat is suffering from significant dental disease.

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How We Perform Cat and Dog Teeth Cleaning Procedures

Dogs and cats need professional teeth cleanings at regular intervals to effectively remove plaque and tartar from both above and below the gum line. Just think, people get their teeth cleaned every 6 months and we brush our teeth twice a day. When was the last time your dog brushed their teeth?

Much of the dental cleaning procedure and equipment we use in pets is identical to what you experience at your dentist’s office. However, our pets don’t quite say “ahh” and hold still in the way a person would, so we do have to put them under general anesthesia. This ensures we can protect their airway during the procedure, safely and thoroughly evaluate their mouth, clean all surfaces of the teeth appropriately, and perform any necessary dental treatments or extractions.

The cat and dog teeth cleaning process at our animal hospital follows these general steps:

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  • First, we conduct an exam and blood work to make sure your pet is in good overall health, and can undergo general anesthesia safely.

  • Once your pet is under anesthesia, the veterinarian will perform a thorough examination of the mouth, probing all surfaces of the teeth to check for tooth damage, inflammation, and signs of infection.

  • A specially-trained veterinary professional will clean your pet’s teeth using an ultrasonic scaler designed to remove stubborn calculus and harmful bacteria on the tooth and under the gums, where it causes the most damage.

  • We will also polish your pet’s teeth so their surfaces are smooth and more resistant to plaque buildup going forward.

  • In some cases, and only following your approval, your veterinarian may need to extract infected or damaged teeth that cannot be saved. Pets who need extractions receive additional pain medication during and after their procedure.

Why You Should Brush Your Pet’s Teeth Daily

It’s easier to make daily teeth brushing a habit for your pet when you start them young. As we all know, brushing our teeth is how we keep plaque and tartar at bay to prevent cavities, gingivitis, and other oral health problems. With dogs and cats, the goal is the same. By brushing their teeth regularly, you reduce the buildup of plaque and tartar, prevent dental disease, and lengthen the amount of time between teeth cleaning procedures at our hospital.

For more on brushing and our other cat and dog teeth cleaning options, call (248) 689-8899!