Why Your Pet Needs Dental Care
Did you know that most dogs and cats over the age of 3 have some form of gum disease? It’s true, but it doesn’t have to be for your pet. Fox Animal Hospital in Evanston, IL offers comprehensive dental services that are designed to keep your pet’s teeth clean and healthy.
Studies have shown that regular professional brushing can not only prevent gum disease. It can also extend your pet’s lifespan, since gum disease is often linked to a number of other conditions, including heart, liver, and kidney disease. Untreated gum disease can also leave your companion in pain and result in tooth loss, so it’s best to be proactive about your pet’s oral health.
About Our Dental Services
As an AAHA-accredited practice, we use state-of-the-art and safe ultrasonic equipment to clean the teeth thoroughly—above and below the gum line—with the assistance of digital dental radiography. For more extensive procedures, we may refer your pet to a veterinary dental specialist. During the dental exam, we check for any loose or defected teeth (cracks, erosions, etc.) that may that require an extraction.
After the cleaning, we polish the teeth to create a smooth surface and remove any remaining residue. We also apply OraVet, a professional sealant which creates a "slippery" barrier along the junction of the tooth and gum. This makes it more difficult for food and bacteria to adhere and start plaque accumulation.
Caring for Your Pet’s Teeth from Home
Once your pet’s teeth have been professionally cleaned, it’s best to continue providing oral care from home, between dental cleanings. If possible, brush your pet’s teeth three to four times a week. This is usually easier if you’ve been brushing since puppyhood/kittenhood. However, if you had a late start or struggle to brush your pet’s teeth for any other reason, consider the following products—most of which are available here at Fox Animal Hospital—to deter tartar build-up:
- Tartar Shield Soft Rawhide Chews
- Greenies and Purina Milk Bone Dental Chews
- OraVet Sealant
- HealthyMouth Water Additive (available at www.healthymouth.com)
All of the above products are marked with a seal of approval by the Veterinary Oral Health Council (VOHC). This seal is a coveted award that is placed only on products that have proven to be effective in preventing gum disease in clinical trials. When purchasing your pet’s dental products and treats, we recommend that you purchase only items that hold the VOHC seal. For a full list of approved products, visit the VOHC’s website.