Did you know that by 3 years of age, 80% of dogs and 70% of cats have oral disease? Periodontal disease is the most common infectious disease of pets. Fortunately, much of it is preventable with brushing.
What causes tooth decay?
A thin layer of food particles, dead cells and proteins from saliva form plaque on the teeth and gums. The plaque layer begins forming within 20 minutes of being brushed. Plaque thickens and hardens becoming a calculus unless it is removed by brushing.
Is dental plaque linked to heart disease?
Yes. The bacteria in plaque is linked to heart disease, heart attack, and cardiac arrhythmia.
Is dental disease linked to kidney disease, lung disease, and bladder infection?
Yes. Pets can develop serious, even life-threatening, illness due to the bacteria in their mouths when they have dental disease. Among the organs damaged by these oral bacteria are the kidneys, lungs, and bladder.
What are the 10 signs my pet has dental disease?
- Bad breath
- Pawing the mouth
- Change in eating habits
- Not allowing face or mouth to be touched
- Swelling on cheeks or below eyes
- Draining face wound
- Runny nose
- Weight loss
How often should your veterinarian check your pet’s teeth?
Each time your pet visits the clinic, the veterinarian should check your pet’s mouth. At minimum, your pet should have their mouth thoroughly examined at least once a year. After your pet reaches 7 years old, they should be examined twice a year. An older pet’s heart, kidneys and liver are more sensitive to the effects of the bacteria that cause dental disease.