Oral health is often overlooked in pets, but your cat or dog’s teeth and gums need both professional and at-home care to stay healthy. Ideally, a dental cleaning and exam will be part of your pet’s annual care plan but you may need to schedule a dental appointment for your furry friend sooner if you notice any of the following signs.
Pets aren’t known for having good breath. However, you may notice that your companionn has particularly foul breath or changes in the smell of their breath then this may be cause for concern. Very bad breath can be a sign of dental disease. Left untreated, gum disease can cause a wide range of oral health issues and complications for liver, heart, and kidney health.
Yellowing or Browning Teeth
Just like humans, animals are susceptible to the buildup of plaque and tartar on their teeth. If you notice brown or yellow patterns on your pet’s teeth—especially near the gum line—this is likely the result of plaque and tartar. These sticky substances can only be removed with a professional cleaning. However, you can work on prevention at home with teeth brushing and plaque-control treats and chew toys.
You might notice small traces of blood around your pets’s food bowl or on his favorite chew toys. This is a sign of gum disease. Swelling and redness are also common. In addition, your pet may be more sensitive to petting around the head and mouth, perhaps even dodging contact due to pain and soreness in the gum tissue.
Changes in Eating Habits
A sudden change in eating habits should always be addressed by your veterinarian. In some cases, a sudden drop off in eating or avoidance of harder foods like kibble can indicate problems with the teeth and gums.
If you notice any of these signs or you want to start a preventive dental care plan for your family pet, call Cat & Dog Hospital of Portland at 503-235-7005 to schedule an appointment today.