Pet Dental Services at Tchefuncte Animal Hospital
When a skin rash, eye infection or orthopedic problems afflicts an animal, the symptoms are there for all to see -- but don't forget about the mysterious territory inside your pet's mouth. The teeth, gums and oral tissues are prone to a great many diseases and disorders, which makes preventative care and timely treatment a must. That's why your Madisonville veterinarian here at Tchefuncte Animal Hospital (Dr. David Moores, Dr. Laura Ferrara or Dr. Mark Mikelonis) wants you to understand the potential problems that can occur and the variety of ways we can help.
Pet Dental Dangers (and How to Avoid Them)
Dog teeth and cat teeth aren't as different from human teeth as you might think; the anatomy is similar enough that many of the same dental and oral health threats apply. The most common issue is periodontal disease, which affects the tissues that hold the teeth in place. 4 out of every 5 pets have some degree of periodontal disease by the time they turn 3 years old. The principal trigger is the development of a hard, rough substance called tartar on the teeth and gums. This is a food source for invading bacteria, which in turn cause inflammation and ultimately destruction of the gums and underlying jaw bone. Your pet can lose teeth to this disease -- but we can help prevent it by performing regular cleanings to get rid of accumulated tartar.
Annual checkups (or even more frequent ones, for certain at-risk animals) are another critical aspect of pet dental care. We can identify cracks or breaks in the teeth that might cause pain, abscesses and other problems. Sometimes an extraction makes sense in order to rehabilitate or preserve the surrounding healthy structures. Your Madisonville veterinarian will also evaluate your pet's mouth for any signs of oral cancer. Most owners would never suspect a case of oral cancer in their pet until the disease has already grown quite advanced -- and this aggressive, fast-moving cancer can prove disfiguring or even deadly. Identifying and treating a case of oral cancer can save your pet's life.
A Visit to Your Madisonville Veterinarian Means a Healthier Mouth for Your Pet
In addition to the critical pet dental services noted above, your Madisonville veterinarian at Tchefuncte Animal Hospital will be happy to provide valuable home care counseling to help you keep your pet's teeth and gums in optimal conditions between visits. For instance, we can show you the correct technique for brushing your pet's teeth and recommend the proper toothpaste for this purpose. We can also steer you toward chew toys and treats that help to curb tartar buildup. Last but not least, we're standing by to help if your pet experiences an acute dental or oral problem requiring immediate care.
Call Tchefuncte Animal Hospital at 985-845-7484 to schedule a dental evaluation and cleaning for your special friend. A healthy mouth is a big step toward a healthy pet!