It is important to realize that your dog will never tell you when it is experiencing dental pain. All dogs will endure some level of dental disease and dental pain during their lives. The best way to minimize these issues is for your dog is to start out with a great dental health routine at home. This should be supplemented with regular dental cleanings performed by veterinary professionals (a veterinarian and veterinary nurse to aid in the dental cleaning and patient care during the procedure).
Proper dental care at home consists of daily brushing. Just as with humans, dogs need the plaque and biofilm removed from their teeth on a daily basis to avoid dental disease. The vast majority of dogs will accept daily brushing by their owners. We are here to teach you how to brush your dog's teeth and provide you with the best brush and dental paste according to your dog's size and flavor preference. It can be a bonding experience for owners to brush their dog's teeth and the dog may come to really enjoy the process. However, not every dog will tolerate and not every person is willing or able to brush their dog's teeth, we can work with you to find the next best solution for home care.
The Veterinary Oral Health Council (VOHC) lists many dog diets and treats that can be helpful if your dog will not tolerate brushing (vohc.org). These approved diets and treats provide some supplemental dental care. However, just as humans require regular dental care to maintain proper dental health, it takes more than a chew toy to properly care for your canine companion's mouth, gums and teeth.
During your regular veterinary visits, we will examine your dog's teeth and will show you the obvious lesions that need to be addressed. We are most concerned with signs of gingivitis, broken teeth, periodontal disease and other painful dental and oral lesions. Our doctors may recommend a veterinary supervised dental cleaning.
Dog Bad Breath, A Sign Of Things To Come
Some people think that dog bad breath is a trait inherent to the canine species. This is a myth that dogs themselves have contributed to over the years through behaviors including drinking from the toilet, eating feces, and self-grooming habits. However, these practices alone do not account for dog bad breath. Dog bad breath is generally a result of the bacteria that live in the infected gum and dental tissue in your dog's mouth. This odor is a sign of progressive dental disease. It will not get better without a thorough veterinary dental cleaning and a proper home care plan.
Signs And Symptoms Of Dog Dental Issues
The best way to prevent dog dental issues is to be proactive. Part of this process includes periodic dog teeth cleaning, but the other part requires vigilance on your part as the dog's owner. If your dog displays any of the following symptoms, please have an examination done by one of our veterinarians ASAP:
- Bad breath / Halitosis
- Problems eating, loss of appetite (only in the most severe cases)
- Red, swollen, bleeding gums (usually the molars in the back of the mouth)
- Loose, broken, missing teeth
- Blood in saliva or nasal discharge
- Lesions in mouth
What A Veterinarian Is Looking For During A Dog Dentistry Examination
During an oral exam, a veterinarian looks for any signs of abnormality or ill health. Veterinarians are trained to spot many different symptoms, including:
- Overbite, underbite, malocclusion, teeth that don't fit together
- Gingivitis and periodontal disease
- Facial swelling
- Tartar buildup
- Fractured or broken teeth
Our veterinarians will develop a customized plan of prevention or treatment based on what is found during the doggie dental exam at your next visit.
Dog Dental Treatments
The dog dental care services provided here at Belton Veterinary Clinic begin with an examination by one of our veterinarians. If dental issues are found in your dog's mouth, our veterinarian will explain the situation to you and recommend the appropriate dental procedure. During this procedure, once your dog is sedated, our veterinarians are able to conduct a more thorough exam including visualizing the entire oral cavity and throat area, probing gingival pockets to assess periodontal disease and dental x-rays. It is important to remember that half of the tooth is under the gum line. Therefore, it is imperative that x-rays are performed to compete assessment of the tooth. Quite often a tooth may look completely normal but the roots are abscessed and a great source of pain for your dog. We utilize all the tools necessary to make sure your dog is completely free of dental disease and pain.
Our veterinarians use a comprehensive 6-Step protocol when performing a standard dog dental treatment. This protocol can be amended depending upon factors including preexisting medical conditions, or based on information gleaned during the examination itself. However, for reference, our dog dental treatment protocol includes:
- General anesthesia, which is necessary in all cases for us to do a thorough dental examination and professional cleaning. We use only the safest anesthesia protocols and human quality products. Your dog will be continually monitored during the entire procedure and post procedure for the safest and most comfortable experience.
- A complete dental exam will be performed before we begin any dental procedure. Dental radiographs are taken at this time if needed. Dental radiology allows our veterinarians to view the internal anatomy of the teeth including the roots and surrounding bone. A thorough dental chart is used to record the dental health of your pet, and any procedures done during the dental cleaning.
- Ultrasonic and hand scaling to remove plaque and tartar above and below the gum line. A thorough scaling below the gum line is critical to the success of any dental cleaning, as this is where illness-causing bacteria hide.
- Polishing to smooth the surface of the teeth after scaling, making them resistant to additional plaque formation.
- Flushing to remove dislodged tartar, plaque and bacteria from the mouth.
- If it is determined that an infected tooth requires extraction, or there is a problem with the gums that must be addressed, then and only then will oral surgery be recommended.
Oral Surgery For Dogs
If oral surgery is necessary, it can provide your canine companion with a new lease on life. In these cases, your dog is dealing with significant pain and is compensating for it in a variety of ways. Our veterinary staff is capable of resolving a variety of oral maladies, including:
- Gingival surgery - including tumor removal and removal of excessive gum tissue secondary to periodontal disease
- Extensive extractions of impacted or damaged teeth
- Oral tumor removal
Our dog dental facility allows our veterinarians to precisely perform whatever oral surgical procedure is necessary, in order to help your canine companion live, or regain a healthy and happy quality of life.
The Harsh Reality Of Periodontal Disease In Dogs
Periodontal disease in dogs is the most common clinical condition occurring in adult canines. By three years of age, most dogs have some evidence of periodontal disease. Unfortunately, other than bad breath, there are few signs of periodontal disease in dogs evident to dog owners and professional diagnosis often comes too late to prevent extensive damage. Periodontal disease in dogs, if left untreated, will lead to infected, non viable teeth and significant dental pain.
How To Schedule Your Dog's Dental Appointment
Scheduling a dental cleaningwith one of our veterinarians is as easy as picking up the phone and giving us a call. Our veterinary staff is here to help make your dog's dentistry appointment easy for you, while making it as painless and pleasant as possible for your canine companion.
Contact Us Today To Schedule Your Dog Dental Care Appointment
The most common cause of halitosis in dogs is periodontal disease arising from plaque (biofilm) and tartar build-up. The plaque biofilm forms over a freshly cleaned and polished tooth as soon as the dog starts to salivate.Will a dental cleaning help my dogs bad breath? ›
Dog bad breath is generally a result of the bacteria that live in the infected gum and dental tissue in your dog's mouth. This odor is a sign of progressive dental disease. It will not get better without a thorough veterinary dental cleaning and a proper home care plan.Is it worth it to get old dogs teeth cleaned? ›
Older dogs tend to need more dental care than younger dogs, and the reason is simply that time, diet, and eating habits contribute to oral decay. So it's always a good idea to have annual exams with your veterinarian if your dog is over seven years of age to make sure their teeth and gums are healthy.How can I remove heavy tartar from my dog's teeth? ›
- 1 Polish your dog's teeth with a soft-bristled toothbrush.
- 2 Give your dog dental chews to remove tartar buildup.
- 3 Clean your dog's teeth with dental wipes.
- 4 Rub oral care gel on your dog's mouth.
- 5 Use dental spray to break down plaque on your dog's teeth.
How much does dog teeth cleaning cost? Typically, dog teeth cleaning costs between $300 to $700, which doesn't include special treatments for periodontal disease or tooth extractions. These extras can add several hundred dollars to the total vet visit cost.Is there a pill for dogs bad breath? ›
These tablets can be given to dogs to control their breath and reduce the bad smell coming from their mouths. The tablets contain chlorophyll, which is a natural substance that is known to absorb bad smells.What causes extremely bad breath in dogs? ›
Oral health issues are the most common cause of bad breath in dogs. This umbrella term includes health problems from significant tartar building and tooth decay to oral infections or gum disease.How often should dogs have their teeth cleaned? ›
Most veterinary dentists recommend that dogs should have their teeth cleaned once a year. However, this can largely depend on the breed and if the dog has any pre-existing health conditions. Larger dogs tend to need one dental cleaning per year, or in some cases, less often.How long can a dog go without teeth cleaning? ›
Most veterinary dentists recommend professional teeth cleanings once a year for most breeds, but a few individuals, especially smaller breeds, may need 2 visits per year due to prevent loss of teeth. After a cleaning, your veterinarian can recommend the appropriate cleaning interval for your pet.Why is it so expensive to have your dog's teeth cleaned? ›
Dog teeth cleanings with anesthesia are generally performed by a veterinarian and are more expensive due to the cost of sedation. Non-anesthetic dental cleanings cost less because they use calming techniques instead of sedatives to keep pets relaxed during the cleaning process.
Dental care, including anesthetized dental cleanings, is an essential part of senior dog care. Thorough pre-anesthetic workups, stabilization of concurrent medical issues prior to anesthesia, and the use of safer anesthetic protocols can minimize these risks in geriatric pets.What dissolves plaque on dog's teeth? ›
The best way to remove plaque is to simply brush your dog's teeth daily with a dog toothbrush and dog-safe toothpaste. Brushing your pooch's teeth every now and then won't get rid of a buildup of plaque, but regular brushing will help keep their teeth and mouths healthy.What dissolves hard tartar? ›
The acetic acid in white vinegar has antibacterial properties and promotes demineralization of tooth enamel, making it effective in removing tartar and plaque. Add half a teaspoon of salt to half a cup of water and add two teaspoons of white vinegar to it. Stir it well and gargle the mixture twice a day.What removes hardened tartar? ›
Baking soda is an effective remedy to remove tartar. You can mix baking soda with your toothpaste once a week to fight tartar buildup. A dental scaler or scraper is another technique to remove hardened tartar.How long does a dog dental cleaning take? ›
How Long Does a Pet Dental Cleaning Take? A routine oral assessment and dental scaling and polishing typically take about 2 hours. This includes time for x-rays to be taken and reviewed by the doctor. If extractions are needed your pet will remain sedated for longer.How much is a dental cleaning without insurance? ›
Without insurance, the cost of a routine dental cleaning could range from $75 to $200, with an average cost of around $125. This amount may vary based on where you live or the experience and training of the dental professional.What breed of dog has the most dental problems? ›
Small breed dogs, such as Poodles, Yorkshire Terriers and Chihuahuas, have an increased tendency for dental disease. In addition, dogs with a flatter facial design, also known as brachycephalics, are also at risk. These may include Boxers, Bulldogs, French Bulldogs, and Shih Tzus, to name a few.What dogs have most dental problems? ›
Boxers, as well as Great Danes, Mastiffs, Bulldogs, and Collies, top the list of breeds that get gingival hyperplasia, an overgrowth or thickening of the gums. Shih Tzus are more prone to delayed tooth eruption, a condition where the dog's teeth erupt from the gums later than what is normal.Is it better to brush your dogs teeth or give them dental treats? ›
So, Are Dental Treats as Good as Brushing for Dog Dental Hygiene? Almost, according to VOHC. Dog dental treats reduce tartar and plaque by 15–20%. Tooth brushing with an approved toothpaste and brush can reduce tartar and plaque by as much as 25–30% if done frequently (two to three times a week) and thoroughly.What can I feed my dog to help with bad breath? ›
Baby carrots, sliced apples (without the seeds), cucumbers and celery are low-calorie, rich in nutrients, safe for dogs and have that tooth-cleaning crunch that is so helpful for chasing away bad breath.
Yes, it is! A veterinarian may not want to anesthetize a medically compromised pet, and they will instead use another approach to clean a dog or cat's teeth. You can have your pet's teeth cleaned without anesthesia whether they're young and healthy or have health issues.How does a vet clean dogs teeth? ›
The teeth are cleaned with an ultrasonic scaler—a tool that vibrates at a high speed—to remove large pieces of plaque and tartar. A hand scaler is then used to clean under the gumline of every tooth and on all sides of the tooth.How can I clean my dogs teeth naturally? ›
- Feed your pup high-quality food.
- Serve vegetables and fruits for snacks.
- Use dried meat treats as dental chews.
- Give your dog chew toys.
- Offer raw bones to scrape teeth clean.
- Avoid chew bones made of starches.
- decreased interest in eating dry food.
- decreased interest in hard treats.
- chewing more slowly than usual.
- dropping food from the mouth while chewing.
- excessive drooling.
- pawing at the mouth.
- new or worsening resistance to having the face/mouth touched.
If you haven't started brushing your dog's teeth, there is no need to worry. You can always start this habit as long as your pet's teeth are healthy. While the ideal time to start is when your dog is young, you can begin now.What happens if dogs teeth aren't cleaned? ›
Dog Teeth Cleaning Can Cut Down on Dental Health Problems
Plaque buildup on a dog's teeth can eventually lead to cavities, rotten teeth, tooth decay and loss, gum disease, and much more. This problem can also cause abscesses in your dog's mouth that could lead to infection.
Did you know that once plaque hardens into tartar, it's impossible to remove it at home? Tartar removal requires a professional cleaning at the vet where your pet is put under anesthesia.What is the brown stuff on my dog's teeth? ›
Tartar is formed when the existing plaque mixes with minerals in your dog's saliva. Tartar is noticeable from its brown appearance, which looks rough on the surface of your dog's teeth. Bad breath and inflammation of the gums also go hand in hand with the build-up of tartar.What is the black stuff on my dog's teeth? ›
What is the black stuff on my dog's teeth? If you notice black or brown spots on your dog's teeth, you're probably looking at plaque and tartar build up. Plaque and tartar like to live along the gumline and in tiny crevasses. Again, this stuff builds up quickly!What's the difference between tartar and plaque? ›
Tartar is what accumulates on your teeth when plaque is not removed. If plaque is left on your teeth for too long, it will harden into tartar and is much more difficult to remove. In fact, tartar can only be removed by a dental professional–you can't get rid of it with regular brushing and flossing.
Studies completed in 2014 have shown apple vinegar, white vinegar and hydrogen peroxide all contain bleaching effects when applied to tooth colour and hard dental tissues. However, vinegar can cause serious damage to the surface of teeth. White vinegar has been shown to have the most damaging effects.What naturally removes tartar? ›
Baking Soda – Tartar deposits can be removed with the use of baking soda's mild abrasives. You'll need to shape the paste and apply it to your toothbrush. Notably, toothpaste and this should not be combined. White Vinegar – White wine vinegar and a warm, salty beverage also work.What causes excessive tartar build up? ›
Poor oral hygiene: Most commonly, plaque and tartar buildup is the result of bad dental habits. Great oral hygiene is needed to clean away these particles on a daily basis. Snacking habits: The more often you snack throughout the day, the more fuel your natural oral bacteria have to create plaque and tartar.Does tartar come off hard? ›
If tartar is not removed, it will become calcified and hard. Tarter breaking off the back of teeth can leave a sharp edge that can damage your tongue and cheek tissue. It is also possible for this hard layer to break off or fall off and enter the bloodstream.What causes massive tartar buildup? ›
Dental Plaque Leads to Tartar Buildup
Over time, if plaque isn't removed on a regular basis, minerals from your saliva are deposited into the plaque biofilm causing it to harden within 24 to 72 hours, turning into tartar.
Spritz Dog Dental Spray
These sprays kill plaque-causing bacteria to make your dog's breath smell fresh. In addition to odor-eliminating effect, dental sprays can also remove and prevent tartar and plaque build-up. Most sprays are simple to use: they simply require owners to spritz the teeth and gums.
- Scaling the teeth above and below the gumline to remove plaque and tartar.
- Polishing the teeth.
- Taking full mouth x-rays.
- Probing around each tooth to check for abnormal pocketing.
Why does my dog's breath smell like fish? A dog's breath can rarely be described as fresh or pleasant, but if your dog smells of fish then it could be a sign of dental issues (infection, tooth decay, abscesses or gingivitis), digestive problems, kidney disease or diabetes.How can I get plaque off my dog's teeth naturally? ›
- Rawhides. Rawhides are the most common way to keep tartar down in dogs and they fit nicely in a stocking! ...
- Deer Antlers. Believe it or not, deer antlers work really well to get rid of tartar. ...
- Raw Bones. RAW is the key here, not cooked.
With their mild abrasiveness and ability to flex around the teeth, raw meaty bones can easily remove plaque and stimulate the gums. Always supervise your dog when giving a bone, and let him chew in an area where messes won't be a problem!
Antibiotics. Topical or oral antibiotics can help control bacterial infection. Topical antibiotics can include antibiotic mouth rinses or insertion of gels containing antibiotics in the space between your teeth and gums or into pockets after deep cleaning.How Long Can dogs live with periodontal disease? ›
Periodontal disease is dangerous for pets, and in some cases is known to take up to two years or more off of a pet's life, if left untreated.Can dogs live with periodontal disease? ›
If untreated, periodontal disease can have severe health implications not only on the dog's mouth but the entire body as well. Some of these health issues include eye issues, increased risk of organ damage, jaw fractures, oral cancer, oronasal fistulas, and tooth abscesses.Why do dogs smell your vag? ›
Key takeaway. Dogs sniff people's crotches because of the sweat glands, also known as apocrine glands, that are located there. Sniffing these glands gives a dog information about a person such as their age, sex, mood, and mating probability.What does it mean when a dog smells a woman's private area? ›
Dogs will shove their noses into a human's crotch, owner or guest, with no hesitation. While the invasive sniffing can be embarrassing, especially if your dog does it to a visitor, it's their way of saying hello and learning about someone.Why does my dog stare at me? ›
Just as humans stare into the eyes of someone they adore, dogs will stare at their owners to express affection. In fact, mutual staring between humans and dogs releases oxytocin, known as the love hormone. This chemical plays an important role in bonding and boosts feelings of love and trust.