I met up with Dr. Meyers over at Carolina Pets Animal Hospital to show you a behind the scenes look at a dental procedure, talk about how oral health is directly linked to overall health, and show you a few ways to keep your dog’s mouth healthy.
Did you know that you should be brushing your dog’s teeth every day? That is the number one best way to ensure good oral health which helps support overall health in your dog. More teeth brushing equates to less likelihood that your dog will need to undergo routine dental procedures. If you can’t get into the habit of daily brushing, at least aim for 2-3 times per week. It makes a huge difference! Here’s how to brush your dog’s teeth: https://youtu.be/aU3n7kaPxKI
Let’s talk about products that make your life easier when it comes to keeping your dog’s mouth healthy!
In the video I show you a number of different types of toothbrushes for your dog – it’s all about personal preference with whatever makes getting all sides of all teeth easier for you. I typically prefer (because my dogs seem to prefer) the meat flavored toothpastes as opposed to the mint/vanilla mint. Here is a great starter kit with 2 different brushes from Virbac: https://amzn.to/2Htu7w4
Adding in dental chews is a great way to treat your canine companion and support their oral health as well. I recommend products that are endorsed by the Veterinary Oral Health Council. That’s their area of expertise. The following products mentioned in the video are all VOHC approved:
CET Enzymatic Chews: https://amzn.to/37sBwGw
Oravet Chews: https://amzn.to/2SQBiDN
Clenzadent Water Additive: https://amzn.to/2SyGcqd
You can also ask your veterinarian for a food from Hill’s Science Diet called t/d. It’s a dental diet, however, I use the kibble, which are large in size to help clean the teeth as treats in my dog’s cookie jar. With an okay from your vet, you can order it shipped directly to your home through Chewy: https://prf.hn/l/7oJN1BK
A true dental cleaning requires anesthesia – anyone that tells you otherwise is not providing you with some very important details, such as:
**The most important area to clean is just below the surface of the gums which you can not safely access while an animal is not sedated. Not to mention, trying to reach below the gum-line with an awake pet is very uncomfortable, and therefore stressful, especially when trying to reach those back teeth
**You cannot take dental radiographs without anesthesia. Without dental radiographs, things such as a festering abscess which could be very painful, a degenerating tooth, and even cancer can be completely missed and cause way more of a problem for your animal than if caught early with a radiograph while they are already under anesthesia for cleaning
Prior to any anesthetic event, blood work should be performed to ensure your pet is healthy. During dental anesthetic procedures, your dog or cat should be constantly monitored through an EKG, a thermometer, (body temperature drops when under anesthesia), blood pressure readings, and have an IV catheter place to keep your pet not only hydrated, but to support their blood pressure. Though veterinarians have all of these wonderful tools to monitor your pet, a good technician that will be performing the cleaning will still manually check in on your pet through the use of a stethoscope, checking gun color, checking eye position, and so on.
The tools used for a canine dental are the same as the tools used for a human dental. The teeth are scaled to remove tartar with an ultrasonic scaler, then polished for a protective layer over the newly scaled teeth.
Thanks for watching!
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