Can dental disease kill my pet

Can Dental Disease Actually Kill My Pet?

Posted by Nikki Wardle on January 23, 2024 at 9:12 AM
Nikki Wardle
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We all know a trip to the dentist isn't exactly the highlight of our day, and for our furry friends, dental hygiene is often more neglected. While a bit of bad breath might seem like a minor inconvenience, untreated dental disease in pets can actually have serious, and even fatal, consequences.

From Painful Gums to Deadly Bacteria:

Dental disease in pets doesn't just cause stinky breath and yellow teeth. It's a progressive condition that starts with calculus then plaque buildup, leading to inflamed gums (gingivitis) and eventually tooth loss and bone destruction (periodontitis). This can be incredibly painful for your pet, making it difficult to eat and even affecting their overall mood and behavior.

But the dangers go beyond the mouth. The bacteria and toxins from infected teeth can enter the bloodstream, spreading to vital organs like the heart, kidneys, and liver. This can lead to a range of serious health problems, including:

  • Endocarditis: A potentially life-threatening infection of the inner lining of the heart.
  • Kidney disease: The toxins from dental disease can damage the kidneys, leading to kidney failure.
  • Liver disease: Similar to the kidneys, the liver can be harmed by the spread of bacteria, impacting your pet’s vital functions.

Protecting Your Pet's Smile:

The good news is that dental disease is largely preventable with proper oral care. Here are some key tips to keep your pet's teeth healthy:

  • Regular brushing: Brushing your pet's teeth at least a few times a week is ideal. There are special pet toothbrushes and toothpaste available to make this easier.
  • Dental chews: Chewing on hard toys or specially designed dental chews can help remove plaque and tartar buildup.
  • Professional cleanings: Just like us, pets need professional dental cleanings from time to time, especially if they have advanced dental disease. Your veterinarian should be discussing your pet’s dental health at each visit.

Taking Care of Your Furry Friend:

Remember, your pet's oral health is an important part of their overall well-being. By taking preventive measures and addressing dental problems early, you can help ensure your furry friend lives a long, healthy, and pain-free life.

A Happy and Healthy Smile:

So next time you're giving your pet a cuddle, take a moment to check their teeth. A healthy smile is a sign of a happy and healthy pet, and it's definitely worth the effort to keep those pearly whites shining!

Bonus Tip: Dental disease can affect different pets in different ways. For example, small dogs are more prone to dental problems than larger breeds. Talk to your veterinarian about the specific risks and needs of your pet to create a personalized dental care plan.

With a little love and attention, you can help your pet maintain a sparkling smile and a wagging tail for years to come!

Topics: Pet Dental Health, Dog Dental Health