Word of mouth for pet own­ers

Cockburn Gazette - - NEWS -

Rais­ing aware­ness of your pet’s den­tal needs.

PET den­tal hy­giene is just as im­por­tant to our beloved an­i­mals as it is to us.

Pet In­surance Aus­tralia spokeswom­an­per­son Na­dia Crighton said keep­ing your pet’s teeth in good con­di­tion could pre­vent many health is­sues.

“It’s also im­por­tant to re­mem­ber that our pets are mas­ters at mask­ing pain,” Crighton said.

“So it’s up to own­ers to be vig­i­lant with check­ing their pet’s teeth.”

Your Vet On­line di­rec­tor Dr Leigh David­son agreed and said mouths were nat­u­rally full of bac­te­ria that could lead to in­fec­tion.

“This in­fec­tion and in­flam­ma­tion that it causes isn’t just con­tained to the mouth though, it ac­tu­ally has far-reach­ing ef­fects on all our body sys­tems,” she said.

“Heart dis­ease, liver dis­ease, kid­ney dis­ease all have links to prob­lems that start in the mouth.”

Dr David­son said pet own­ers should have a vet­eri­nar­ian check their pet’s teeth ev­ery six months and per­form a scale and pol­ish if re­quired.

Signs of den­tal dis­ease in­clude bad breath, stain­ing on teeth, bleed­ing gums, ex­ces­sive sali­va­tion, sore­ness around the jaw, dif­fi­culty chew­ing and un­usual swelling as­so­ci­ated with the jaw.

“Most of­ten we smell a nasty stench of bad breath,” Dr David­son said.

“We call this hal­i­to­sis and if your pet has this it is def­i­nitely time to get their mouth checked at the vets. Your an­i­mal’s breath should not have a smell that is un­pleas­ant.

“The other sign that your pet has a prob­lem, and this is im­por­tant, is if you see any red­ness around the gum line. This is a sign of in­flam­ma­tion called gin­givi­tis.

“Gin­givi­tis can be re­versed, but if left it re­sults in pe­ri­odon­ti­tis, an ir­re­versible con­di­tion that may re­sult in your pet need­ing teeth to be re­moved.”

Have a vet­eri­nar­ian check your pet's teeth ev­ery six months.

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