According to the American Veterinary Dental Society, by 3 years of age, 80% of dogs and 70% of cats have oral disease. Some signs commonly associated with oral disease include yellow or brown tartar buildup, red inflamed gums, bad breath, and a change in eating or chewing habits, pawing at the face, and / or generalized depression.

Food debris, bacteria and saliva combine to form plaque around teeth at the gum line. The plaque combines with calcium salts in the mouth to form tarter. Tarter buildup begins to migrate below the gum line and results in separation of the gum from the tooth. At this stage, professional cleaning is needed as brushing alone will not remove the tarter. The animal will have to be anesthetized to remove the tarter both below and above the gum line. If left unchecked, more bacteria and food debris will accumulate and lead to deterioration of the soft tissue and bone surrounding the tooth. This results in irreversible periodontal disease that in turn can lead to the loss of a tooth.

 There are other reasons you should pay close attention to your pet’s dental health. Dental disease can affect other significant organs. Bacteria in the mouth circulate through the blood stream and potentially cause serious kidney infections, liver disease, lung disease, and heart valve disease.

The first step toward good oral health is a dental health checkup. If necessary, your veterinarian will recommend a dental cleaning or “prophylaxis”. With every dental an in-clinic application of OraVet barrier sealant is applied to protect cleaned teeth. To maintain this protective barrier, you apply OraVet Plaque Prevention Gel to your pet’s gum line weekly at home. In addition to reducing bacteria that can cause bad breath, OraVet Plaque Prevention Gel may help extend the time between cleaning.

If you are concerned about your pet’s dental health, please set up an appointment for a dental exam.