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Dental Care Facts PDF Print E-mail

Healthy Teeth, Healthy Pets

As soon as puppy or kitten teeth emerge, it’s time to start brushing. Although baby teeth are replaced with adult teeth, the puppy or kitten gets used to the brushing procedure, which continues for life.

Why is this important? Beyond the bad breath caused by rotting teeth and gums -- "dog breath" is a symptom of disease, not a normal part of owning a dog or cat -- the infections caused by dental problems can shorten your pet's life by damaging internal organs. Bad teeth can also leave your pet in constant pain.

Daily removal of plaque is the key to an oral hygiene program. Unless your pet's teeth are brushed daily, plaque, which is an accumulation of bacteria, will build up at the gum line. Eventually calculus forms, further irritating the gums (gingivitis), and then infection progresses to loosen and destroy the attachment of the tooth (periodontal disease). In addition to loose teeth, infection under the gumline can spread to the liver, kidneys, and heart.

Veterinarians now recommend training kittens and puppies to accept having their teeth brushed, a job that's not really that hard, even with older dogs and cats. Approach the task with a positive attitude, take it slow and easy, and then follow with something the pet likes -- a play session or a food treat. There are also products in gel form available that can be applied to teeth to keep them clean of plaque. Use only veterinary toothpaste for pets. Don’t use human toothpaste as animals cannot rinse and spit.

For kittens and puppies, the focus is on training and prevention, but adult pets will likely need veterinary attention before a preventive-care program can help. Your veterinarian will check your pet's mouth, teeth and gums as part of the regular examination, and make recommendations based on what he or she finds there.

 

For many pets, the next step will be a complete dental prophylaxis (cleaning) under anesthesia. The procedure involves leaning and polishing the teeth and checking for and treating broken or rotting teeth, cavities, abscesses and periodontal disease. Today's anesthetics are dramatically safer than those of even a few years ago, making the dangers and pain of untreated dental problems the bigger risk to health, even with older pets.

 

How often does my pet need to have teeth cleaned by the veterinarian?

Every pet benefits from an annual physical examination and oral assessment and treatment plan. Depending on the degree of plaque and tartar accumulation, dental prophys can be scheduled annually for most pets. Please talk to your veterinarian to determine what is best for your pet.

 

健康的牙齿,健康的宠物

当幼犬和幼猫长牙齿的时候,就可以开始刷牙,尽管乳齿会被恒齿取代,这样幼犬和幼猫就学会并习惯刷牙的过程,这种习惯要持续一生。

为什么这很重要呢?腐烂的牙齿和发炎的齿龈都会引起难闻的呼吸气味,“猫狗的口臭”是一个疾病的症状,不是猫狗的正常部分,牙齿的问题可以损害内部器官,并缩短宠物的生命,不健康的牙齿可以诱发您的宠物持续的疼痛。

对于日常的保健计划,定时清除牙菌斑是较关键的,除非您的宠物每日都进行刷牙,牙菌斑是齿龈周围细菌不断蓄积所产生的,最终牙结石会形成,牙结石可以引发齿龈发炎,这种感染会引起牙齿的松动和破坏牙齿(周期性的疾病)。此外松动的牙齿、牙龈的感染很容易导致肝脏、肾脏和心脏的感染。

兽医强烈推荐驯养您的幼犬幼猫使用牙刷,尽管是老龄犬猫也不例外,以积极的态度,做些宠物比较喜欢的,和它们玩或者给些它们喜欢的食物,有一些护齿凝胶的产品有助于清除它们的牙菌斑,要用宠物专用的牙膏,不要用人用的普通牙膏,因为动物不会漱口和吐出。

对于幼犬和幼猫的口腔疾病,关键是培训和预防,但是在护理计划前成年犬猫有可能需要大夫的帮助,做为常规检查,我们的兽医会检查宠物的口腔、牙齿和齿龈,当检查时兽医会针对他们所检查到的问题提出建议。

 

对于许多宠物,下一步就是洁牙,这个过程会清洁和抛光牙齿,对破损的和腐烂的牙齿 ,龋齿,脓肿及周期的疾病进行处理,现在的麻醉药品要比几年前的麻醉药安全许多,所以现在要担心的不是麻醉药的风险,而是错失治疗机会后带来的伤害,包括老年宠物。

 

多久需要兽医给我的宠物洁一次牙齿?

每个宠物都会从年度体检和口腔检查以及治疗计划中受益。这还要依靠于牙菌斑和结石的严重程度,洁牙术适用于大部分的宠物。但仍需要您和兽医讨论针对宠物口腔保健及治疗的最佳方案。

©2007 International Center for Veterinary Services

 

 

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