Ali picked up Pretzel, the ginger 8 month old kitten for a cuddle. She also put him down pretty smartly – his breath smelt really bad!
Out came the cat cage and Pretzel was whisked off to see the vets.
On examination, Charleen found that Pretzel had gingivitis – a severe inflammation of his gums. He also had a build-up of plaque and tartar on his teeth.
What? Pretzel isn’t even a year old yet!
Pretzel is one of those cats who need ongoing dental care to keep him healthy.
While many pets don’t show symptoms of dental problems until they are older, there are some pets that show symptoms when they’re young.
But it’s not all bad news. In fact, it’s good news really. We can start looking after all our pets’ teeth when they are young, whether they have health issues or not. If your young pet shows signs of dental problems, it acts as an early warning, meaning you have time to look after their teeth so they don’t needlessly suffer later on from a painful mouth, difficulty eating, bad breath, loose or lost teeth, gum disease and costly vet dental procedures.
So how on earth do you keep your pet’s teeth clean and mouth healthy? Don’t panic, here are six ways.
Daily tooth brushing
Nothing beats home brushing, ideally every evening. Yes, that means buying your pet a toothbrush and toothpaste (and no, not a human toothbrush and toothpaste). Brushing helps prevent bacterial infections, periodontal disease and gingivitis. We recommend The Petosan kits or the CET toothbrushes and paste.
Daily tooth wiping with dental gels
For unwilling pets, gels are eaier to use as you don’t need to get a toothbrush into your pet’s mouth. Using gel softens plaque and tartar and its antibacterial properties supports gum health. We have a range of gels and wipes to recommend.
The mechanical action created by chewing provides a gentle abrasive on your pet’s teeth, helping to breakdown the bacteria that forms plaque and specific active ingredients and nutrients help reduce gingivitis. We can tailor a diet to help with dental issues as well as any other health issues they may have.
Pets that actively chew can have less plaque build-up because the mechanical action of chewing fights plaque and tartar. We recommend the Veggie dent chews for dogs or Greenies for cats.
Gnawing and chewing helps clean teeth by scraping away soft tartar and reducing tartar and plaque build-up. We have a range of toys to suit your pet.
Dental water additives
We recommend Healthy Mouth because “clinical trials and field use show it safely cleans teeth and gums, reduces plaque and oral bacteria and inhibits bacteria and germs that cause halitosis.” The longer Healthy Mouth is used, the more remaining plaque is significantly softened, making brushing, gels, diets, treats and toys even more effective.
So, here’s what we’re offering you: If you want us to check your pet’s teeth in August, we’re offering free 15-minute nurse dental consultations. These include a full dental check with a free take-home dental plan personalised to your pet and free goody bag.
Here’s how it works:
Call us on 09 294 8779 to book your free 15-minute nurse dental consultation.
Bring your pet in – they can have food and water right up to their appointment.
Our nurse will inspect your pet’s mouth by looking inside, feeling around for loose teeth or unusual lumps and bumps.
If there are no problems, you’ll be given a free take-home dental plan personalised to your pet, and a free dental goody bag.
If there is an existing or potential problem we’ll alert you and get our vet to check – hopefully during your 15-minute appointment, but if they’re unavailable we’ll keep your pet for a couple of hours and call you once it’s been seen. Then we’ll discuss a recommended plan of action with you (e.g. teeth cleaning under anesthesia) plus give you a free take-home dental plan personalised to your pet, and a free dental goody bag.
Remember, good oral health is not just essential for your pet’s mouth, it’s essential for your pet’s overall health AND the health of your wallet (avoid costly vet dental procedures in the future).
So call us on 09 294 8779 to book your 15-minute nurse dental consultation. It’s free and may save you hundreds of dollars in the future!