A dog’s oral health is an essential component of their overall wellness. Your dog should have their teeth and gums examined every six months when they have their regular visit to the vet. Plaque that hardens on your dog’s teeth can turn into tartar, which can only be removed by your veterinarian. If left on the surface of your dog’s teeth, tartar can lead to dental decay and other issues that could seriously affect your dog’s health. Dental cleanings for dogs can help remove tartar and keep their teeth and gums healthy. A dental cleaning includes a thorough examination, professional teeth cleaning and polishing to remove any remaining debris. Regular dental cleanings for dogs can help them live long and happy lives, so schedule your dog’s next cleaning today!

Introducing Brushing at Home

Taking good care of your dog’s teeth at home can help them stay healthier for longer. Invest in a puppy toothbrush that can take care of your dog’s dental hygiene needs. Make dental brushing part of your dog’s daily routine. Dental cleanings for dogs are most effective when a soft-bristled toothbrush is used with a specially formulated toothpaste. Do NOT use human toothpaste or baking soda, which can be irritating to a dog’s stomach. Some toothbrushes can be made to fit right over your finger. It might help to let your dog smell the toothpaste before you brush their teeth so that they become a little bit more familiar with it. Try to spend about 30 seconds brushing each side of the mouth. Some pets take time to grow accustomed to brushing and may even enjoy the process. Introduce the brushing process gradually, aiming to lengthen the time with each session. Once they learn that there is nothing to fear, they may be less resistant.

Dental Cleaning for Dogs in Tucson

Your dog’s teeth will be cleaned using an ultrasonic scaler which vibrates at a high speed to remove large pieces of plaque and tartar. Next, your veterinarian will use a hand scaler to remove anything near the gumline and the sides of the tooth. Your vet will then polish and rinse your dog’s mouth to ensure that all debris has been washed out. Lastly, they will provide a fluoride treatment to protect your dog’s enamel until their next visit.

Dental probes will be used during the exam to measure the depths of tooth pockets and to check for bleeding gums. A deep pocket could indicate the existence of periodontal disease. Your veterinarian may also use oral x-rays to evaluate the jawbone. Anesthesia will likely be recommended depending on the needs of your pet. Speak with your veterinarian to learn more about the anesthesia options available for your pet’s treatment.

Are dental cleanings for dogs similar to human dental cleanings?

Dental cleanings for dogs cannot use human dental scalers because they can cause an array of problems for your dog’s teeth. Dogs should be put under anesthesia for dental cleanings because a conscious dog may be difficult to hold. Dental cleanings for dogs may cause anxiety for the animal and could leave them at risk for dental disease.

Major concerns of human scaling on a dog include:

  • Allows plaque and tartar to gather in less-visible areas
  • Unsafe for the dog being treated and can lead to injury
  • Can cause scratches on the surface of the tooth

Canine Dental Abnormalities

veterinarian finds any abnormalities during the dental cleaning, it is possible they may contact you about further treatment. It may be easier to treat your dog while they are still under anesthesia during this process, rather than have to put them under a second time. If your dog is under anesthesia, it may be best to stay in the office until their treatment is complete. Some dental abnormalities may include:

  • Gum disease
  • Gingivitis
  • Periodontitis
  • Unerupted teeth
  • Improper bite
  • Enamel defects
  • Tooth decay
  • Trauma to face or jaw

If your dog has any of these dental abnormalities, call your veterinarian right away. Be sure to schedule dental cleanings for dogs twice a year to ensure their smile stays happy and healthy.

Canine Dental Disease

If your dog is having a dental health issue, it is essential that you take them to see their veterinarian for a full dental examination. If left untreated, dental disease can cause serious health issues if left untreated. Improving your dog’s oral health can improve their quality of life as well. Plaque can lead to deterioration of the teeth and can damage the gums if left untreated. Just like humans, dogs need to have their teeth brushed daily.

Common signs that your dog may have an oral health issue:

  • Persistent bad breath
  • Sore mouth
  • Difficulty eating
  • Loose teeth
  • Pawing at their mouth
  • Bleeding gums
  • Yellow or brown tartar on the surface of the teeth
  • Dribbling

Nutrition’s Effect on Dental Health

Your dog’s diet can have a significant impact on their dental health. It’s important to not only make sure you schedule your dental cleanings for dogs but also that you help them maintain their healthy smile with a proper diet. Factors that can contribute to canine dental disease include their breed, age, and immune system health. Choosing nutritious food and exercising your dog regularly can help maintain a healthy smile and lifestyle. Speak with your veterinarian to learn more about what types of food may be more beneficial to your oral health. Most dogs need both dry and wet food to maintain their oral health. The texture of dog food can help stimulate saliva production and help maintain gum tissue health.

There are some steps that you can take to improve your dog’s oral health:

  • Minimize plaque by brushing your dog’s teeth daily
  • Provide your dog with a nutrient-dense diet
  • Schedule dental cleanings for dogs every six months

Provide Helpful Chew Toys

Dogs that actively chew toys have less plaque buildup and healthier mouths. Some dog treats are specially made to help care for your pet’s teeth, such as rawhide chews, bones, and biscuits. However, only providing your dog with dental treats is not enough to ensure their mouth stays healthy. Some dogs may eat dental treats too quickly for them to be effective, so chew toys can prolong dental treatment. A chew toy is long-lasting and can provide continuous care to your dog’s teeth and gums. There are plenty of toys to choose from, like rubber bones or “toothbrush” sticks. Ask your veterinarian if they have any chew toy recommendations.

Dental cleanings for dogs and regular at-home care are essential to providing your pet with a healthy smile. Talk to your veterinarian about what further steps you can take to address your dog’s dental health needs. A healthy pup is a happy pup, so schedule their next dental cleaning today!