February is Pet Dental Month, a time for pet owners to be aware of the dangers of gum disease in pets.
When you take your dog to the vet, have them check your dog for the following (information courtesy of AVMA):
- bad breath
- broken or loose teeth
- extra teeth or retained baby teeth
- teeth that are discolored or covered in tartar
- abnormal chewing, drooling, or dropping food from the mouth
- reduced appetite or refusal to eat
- pain in or around the mouth
- bleeding from the mouth
- swelling in the areas surrounding the mouth
Bad breath in dogs and cats could be a sign of dental diseases and lead to more serious problems than just cavities. Pet owners that don't brush dogs' teeth put pets at risk of gum diseases such as toothache, periodontal disease (the most common gum condition in dogs and cats) and Stomatitis.
Some causes of dog dental disease include (AVMA):
- broken teeth and roots
- periodontal disease
- abscesses or infected teeth
- cysts or tumors in the mouth
- malocclusion, or misalignment of the teeth and bite
- broken (fractured) jaw
- palate defects (such as cleft palate)
Your veterinarian will tell pet owners to brush dogs' teeth daily and give them minty dog treats to treat their mouths.
Have more tips? Share pet dental tips on @EasyPetFence Facebook using hashtag #PetDentalHealth.