Looking after your pet’s teeth is extremely important for their general health and can prevent serious problems as they get older. Whenever you bring your pet in to our surgery for any reason, whether routine vaccinations or a problem, we will check your pet’s teeth and be happy to advise you on preventative care or further treatment as necessary. Our nurses are also happy to do dental checks and advise you on routine dental care.
Dental disease in dogs can often be prevented by brushing their teeth with a toothpaste and brush specially made for dogs and most dogs tolerate this very well…many enjoy it! Feeding a good quality dry dog food and ensuring your dog is chewing his food by eating it at a reasonable pace can also help prevent dental problems.
Cats are prone to gum disease, or gingivitis. This is usually caused by plaque and bacterial build up on the teeth, but can also be caused by a virus which causes inflammation on the gum margins. The chance of developing gum disease can be reduced by vaccinating your cat, and feeding a biscuit-based food rather than a wet food. Cats will often not tolerate brushing, but if they will, this can help greatly. Once present, gum disease may require a dental procedure under general anaesthetic to treat, and sometimes antibiotics too.
Whilst in many cases home care is all that is needed, in others a full scale and polish of all teeth is needed. This is performed under general anaesthetic to allow access to all of the mouth and to ensure the safety of the patient. We have modern dental equipment to make this procedure as comfortable, quick and pain-free for your pet as possible.
Rabbits also require routine dental care, and should have their teeth checked regularly which is done at annual vaccinations. The rabbit’s diet is often responsible for any tooth problems, although sometimes problems are caused by misalignment of the teeth or jaw. Rabbits’ teeth grow continuously throughout their life, and are worn down by eating grass and hay, which should form the main part of their diet. The most common problem seen is overgrowth of either or both of the incisors (front teeth) or the molars (back teeth). This overgrowth needs to be treated to ensure the rabbit can eat comfortably and grind down its food, and may be done while the rabbit is awake or under general anaesthetic, depending on the extent of the problem.