Dental Care For Your Pets Could Help Them Live Longer

Regular Pet Dental Care Reduces the Risk of Many Diseases

With Halloween only a few days from now, many ghosts and goblins are anxiously preparing to collect treats and avoid getting tricked.

As we found out in this week’s Animal Answers, although our pets should stay away from the sweet treats, it doesn’t mean they will never be tricked when it comes to dental care.

Imagine living nearly two decades without taking a toothbrush to your teeth.

“Most pets over the age of two have some sort of dental disease,” Veterinarian Jody Berquist said.

Staff members at Superior Animal Hospital are no strangers to dental data.

“It has been shown that you can extend their lifespan by about 20 percent,” Berquist said.

A few extra years of life, with a simple reminder to brush those pearly whites.

Berquist says, “It helps prevent heart disease, liver disease, kidney disease from the bacteria floating around in the blood stream.”

It’s all about professional prevention, which experts say is often avoided by thinking simple home remedies will do the job.

“I think the biggest one is that they give them things like milk bones and think that that brushes their teeth. That’s probably the biggest fallacy,” Berquist said.

It’s why experts recommend a complete, regular dental exam for your pets.

“Some dogs could definitely use a dental exam every six months, some dogs don’t need a teeth cleaning for three years,” Berquist said.

The process reflects a human visit to the doctors office.

“We look at their teeth, see how much tartar is on them, see if it looks like they have more severe dental disease.”

After the physical is complete, your pet is prepared to be struck, by whitening.

“The morning of the exam we draw blood, pre-surgical anesthetic blood work to make sure their liver and kidneys are working fine,” Berquist said.

X-rays are also taken to make sure tooth fractures aren’t hidden by plaque buildup.

Berquist says most foods don’t help get tartar off the teeth. If the dogs chew them it does a little bit but otherwise tartar will continue to build up.

Veterinarians say cats should also make regular trips in for dental care. It’s an appointment, well worth making.  

“Getting your pet’s teeth cleaned and keeping them clean and healthy is one of the most important things you can really do for your pet, to help them live a long, pain free life.”

It’s dental month over at Superior Animal Hospital, located at 36 East 2nd Street in Superior.

You will receive ten percent off any dental care until October 31. The Hospital also recognizes National Pet Dental Month in February with the same deal.

Mild dental care ranges in price from $250 to $400 dollars.

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