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The Importance of Your Pet's Dental Health

Updated: Aug 25, 2022

There are many health problems common to cats and dogs that can be effectively managed or often avoided if timely and effective measures are taken. Unfortunately, animals are unable to care for their teeth without the help of their owners. Routine dental examinations can detect and/or prevent periodontal (gum) disease. At home dental care can help keep your pet’s teeth and gums healthy.

The following are warning signs of dental disease:

  • Bad breath

  • Tartar- Yellow-brown crust on the teeth

  • Bleeding gums

  • Loss of appetite

  • Teeth that are missing or loose

  • Difficulty eating and chewing food

Dental disease progresses in stages. If detected early, you can prevent further damage and save as many teeth as possible. The tartar that builds up in your pet’s mouth, and any other infected areas of the gums can have an adverse effect on your pet’s heart, kidneys, intestinal tract and joints.

  • Comprehensive Oral Health Assessment and Treatment or COHAT

  • Review pre-anesthetic bloodwork

  • Intravenous catheter placement before anesthetic induction

  • Thorough oral exam

  • Dental probing and charting

  • Full mouth pre, post and sometimes intra operative dental x-rays

  • Removing tartar buildup to prevent enamel erosion and gum recession

  • Checking for any growths on the gums

  • Removing diseased teeth

  • Polishing the teeth to keep enamel healthy

  • A treatment plan for and problems that are found

  • Discharge instructions including pain control and feeding instructions

  • Recheck exam and plan for future dental care

Our goal is to provide your pets with a pain-free and healthy mouth. Dental disease is the most common and frequently diagnosed medical condition in our pets. We hope that understanding the parts of a COHAT gives you the information and tools to make the best decision for your beloved pet’s overall dental health to improve their quality and length of life with us.


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