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Pet Dental Health Month

February is Pet Dental Health Month! This is one area of pet care that is often overlooked. Taking care of your pet’s teeth is actually very important. Just like people, our furry friends can develop painful dental issues. Read on as a Lexington, KY vet offers tips on pet dental care.

Dogs

Did you know that 4 out of 5 dogs have dental issues? Fido uses his mouth to play, so he’s prone to breaking or cracking teeth. Gum disease is also very common for our canine buddies. Keep your pup’s choppers in tip-top shape by brushing them regularly, using a pet toothbrush and toothpaste. If your pooch won’t let you brush his teeth, offer him dental-formula kibble, treats, or chews. Oral rinses can also help.

Cats

Kitties can develop many different dental issues, from abscesses to gum disease to feline stomatitis, which is a painful mouth infection. If you have a kitten, you can teach little Fluffy to accept having her teeth brushed while she’s still young. As with dogs, use pet toothbrushes and toothpastes. Another option is to try using a dental stick or an oral rinse.

Pocket Pets

Bunnies, Guinea pigs, hamsters, gerbils, and other small pets have several things in common, but one of the most important ones is the fact that they all have open-rooted teeth. You’ll need to provide your tiny furball with plenty of chew toys. Luckily, this doesn’t necessarily entail spending lots of money. You can make some great chew toys out of regular household items, such as plain paper and the cardboard tubes from toilet-paper rolls. Look online for great DIY ideas.

Exotics

Many other types of pets, such as birds, don’t actually have teeth, so to speak. However, oral care is still very important for these guys. Ask your vet for specific care recommendations. You’ll also want to get some advice on warning signs to look for.

Tips

While each type of pet has their own symptoms that would indicate dental issues, there are a few common ones to look for. These include drooling, swelling, bad breath, and visible tartar buildup. You may also notice behavioral clues, such as a change in eating habits, lack of interest in play, and overall grumpiness. Ask your vet for more information.

Do you have questions about caring for your pet’s teeth? Contact us, your Lexington, KY vet clinic, today!

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