To emphasize the importance of good dental health for your pet, the American Veterinary Medical Association sponsors National Pet Dental Health Month each February. According to the AVMA, “your pet’s teeth should be checked at least once a year by your veterinarian for early signs of a problem and to keep your pet’s mouth healthy.” Of course, you should have your pet’s teeth checked sooner if you notice any problems. These could include bad breath, broken or loose teeth, teeth that are discolored or covered with tartar, abnormal chewing, and reduced appetite or refusal to eat, to name a few.
The Most Common Dental Condition in Dogs & Cats
The AVMA notes that periodontal disease is the most common dental condition in dogs and cats. “Early detection and treatment are critical, because advanced periodontal disease can cause severe problems and pain for your pet.” It starts with plaque that hardens into tartar and once it gets below the gumline, it can cause infection and damage to the jawbone. And periodontal disease doesn’t just affect the mouth, it can affect the kidneys, liver and heart. You should always consult your veterinarian for any problems or concerns about your pet’s health. Your veterinarian or a board-certified veterinary dentist can make recommendations for the health of your pet’s teeth, tips on daily care and options should there be any problems.
For More Information . . .
For more information about National Pet Dental Health Month, be sure to visit the American Veterinarian Medical Association website at www.AVMA.org.