Frenship Vet Clinic celebrates National Pet Dental Health Month in February

Did you know that the health of your pet’s mouth directly affects overall health, quality of life, behavior and even longevity? Every dog and cat needs professional and home care for their dental needs!

“Dental disease is a big concern and one every pet owner should be aware of,” says Dr. Steve of Frenship Vet Clinic. “Periodontal (gum) disease is the number one diagnosed problem in dogs and cats. By the age of two, 80 percent of dogs and 70 percent of cats have some form of periodontal disease. Infectious oral diseases affecting the gums can lead to bacteria in the blood stream, which can infect other parts of the body. Dental disease has been linked to numerous problems including heart attacks, kidney disease, liver disease, osteoporosis, pregnancy problems and diabetes. For your pet’s overall good health, it’s important to address their dental needs.”

To help educate pet owners about the importance of dental care for dogs and cats, February is National Pet Dental Month (sponsored by the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA). The staff of Frenship Vet Clinic urges all pet owners to review their pet’s dental care and take the necessary steps to ensure their pet has healthy teeth and gums.

“You are not alone in the fight against pet dental decay,” says Dr. Steve. “Ask us to show you how to brush your pet’s teeth and look for dental problems. We can also recommend pet dental care products, food choices and appropriate chew toys. We can set a schedule for professional dental care based on the condition of your pet’s teeth, age and breed. With regular care, you can help your pet experience a lifetime of healthy teeth.”

Dr. Steve says all pets are at risk for developing dental problems, so it is important for owners to have their pets examined annually to detect problems early. It also is important for owners to check their pets often between visits for these warning signs:

• Bad breath

• Tartar buildup on the teeth

• Swollen, receding or bleeding gums

• Fractured or abscessed teeth

• Change in eating habits

Between vet visits, it’s important for pet owners to provide good oral health care for their pets at home. Dr. Steve and the staff at Frenship Vet Clinic recommend these simple steps to ensure proper pet dental health care:

Step 1. Visit a veterinarian at least once a year – The veterinarian will examine a pet’s teeth and gums. Recommendations may be made for cleaning, polishing and other dental care in the hospital and a program of home dental care.

Step 2. Professional dental care – There are two main reasons for routine cleanings. First, they help prevent periodontal disease by removing plaque and tartar build-up. Second, a cleaning allows for a complete oral examination. Once a pet is anesthetized, accumulated tartar and calculus are removed by ultrasonic and hand scaling. Dental problems like cavities or broken teeth can be identified and repaired, and teeth that are beyond repair can be extracted. Finally, the teeth are polished to slow down formation of new plaque, tartar and calculus.

Step 3. Dental care at home – Ask the clinic staff about specially-formulated foods and treats with proven benefits in plaque and tartar removal. Also ask about regular dental care for your pets that you can do at home, such as brushing the pet’s teeth with specially-formulated animal toothpaste.

For more information about the benefits of good dental care, visit with Dr. Steve and his staff at Frenship Vet Clinic; they would be happy to answer your questions. Frenship Vet Clinic offers a full range of pet health services, including vaccinations, dental, other preventative medicine, diagnostics, internal medicine, surgery, and more.

Frenship Vet Clinic is located at 202 E Hwy 62 in Wolfforth (on the access road). Call 806-866-2838.

For more information, visit www.frenshipvet.com. There you can learn more about Dr. Steve and the staff, read articles, and access resources like an online pet pharmacy.

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