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Do dogs need dental cleaning?

If you have a dog then you likely know how important routine dental care is for their overall health, and this includes dental cleanings. Our vets in Boulder County talk about when and why you should have your dog's teeth cleaned and the signs that it may be time to bring your pup in for professional dental care.

Do dogs need their teeth cleaned?

You may be wondering if dogs need dental cleaning, and the answer is yes!

A dental cleaning for your dog may include a thorough examination, teeth cleaning, and polishing to remove tartar and plaque that causes periodontal disease. This will have to be done while your dog is under general anesthesia.

Once anesthetized, your vet will examine your dog's mouth and note any abnormalities. A dental probe will be used to assess gum bleeding and periodontal pockets, where food can accumulate and cause decay if not properly cared for.

When periodontal disease has advanced, it may be impossible to save the severely affected teeth, which may need to be extracted during the procedure or later.

When should I get my dog's teeth cleaned?

It's recommended to clean your dog's teeth once a year, but this may vary depending on the breed. Certain dog breeds necessitate more frequent dental cleanings, so check with your veterinarian to see if your dog requires additional cleanings.

During a dental cleaning, your pet will be sedated for your dog's and the staff's safety. The veterinarian will first perform X-rays to determine if there are any underlying issues.

How to Tell When Your Dog Needs a Dental Cleaning

An easy way to tell if your dog needs a teeth cleaning is just by looking at their teeth. A dog's teeth will show a buildup of plaque. If you notice some plaque buildup or gingivitis in your dog's mouth, it's probably time for a dental cleaning.

These issues will only get worse if they aren't addressed early on, and they can lead to serious dental issues and sensitivity for your dog.

Signs of Dental Problems in Dogs:

The most common symptoms of dental problems in dogs includes:

  • Bad breath (Halitosis)
  • Discolored or yellowing teeth
  • Receding and/or bleeding gums (Gingivitis)
  • Drooling (more than average)
  • Loose or missing teeth
  • Poor appetite
  • Sneezing and nasal discharge (from an abscess that breaks into the nasal passages)

What You Can Do At Home

The best thing you can do for your dog is brush their teeth at home on a regular basis! The more the better, but even two or three brushings per week will keep you in good shape. Brushing your dog's teeth on a daily basis becomes easier as they become accustomed to the process.

Where can I get my dog's teeth cleaned?

To schedule a professional teeth cleaning for your dog, please contact our team at Lafayette Companion Animal Hospital. Your dog or cat, like you, should have a dental examination once a year. Pets with a higher risk of dental problems may require more frequent visits.

Our veterinarians can assess, diagnose, and treat dental health issues in cats and dogs.

Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. For an accurate diagnosis of your pet's condition, please make an appointment with your vet.

If your dog is in need of a dental exam or professional cleaning, contact our Lafayette Companion Animal Hospital vets to schedule an appointment.

New Patients Welcome

Lafayette Companion Animal Hospital is accepting new patients! Our experienced vets are passionate about the health of Boulder County companion animals. Get in touch today to book your pet's first appointment.

Contact Us

Contact (720) 214-0270