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Oral issues

One of the most common pet health problems arise from oral uncleanliness. It's very difficult to keep your pet's teeth clean, and oral health problems are common. Research shows that by age two, 70 percent of cats and 80 percent of dogs have some sign of dental disease. Problems start with a sticky plaque buildup, which hardens into tartar. If left unresolved, it leads to gingivitis, a painful condition caused by inflamed gums. Eventually, periodontal disease could develop. Pets may lose teeth and are prone to infections that can affect other organs in the body.

Treatments

Keeping your pet's teeth and gums healthy is actually very easy. First, ask your veterinarian about a professional prophylaxis that cleans the teeth. Next, feed your pet a larger kibble specially made for dental care. This food wipes the teeth clean as your pet chews. Also, start brushing your pet's teeth. Ask your vet to teach you how to do this properly. Several factors contribute to oral health problems including: Age: Dental disease is more common in older animals. Breed: Small dogs are prone to overcrowded, misaligned teeth, making them harder to clean. Food: Sticky foods can lead to a more rapid buildup of plaque.

Signs

If your pet has oral health issues, you'll notice several things, and bad breath is the first sign. Other indications are: Dribbling saliva, sore mouth, difficulty eating, yellow or brown tartar on teeth, bleeding gums, pawing or rubbing the mouth, loose teeth or tooth loss. Even if your animal isn't showing these signs, ask your veterinarian for a dental checkup and advice on how to keep your pet's mouth clean.

Healthy Teeth and Gums

Minimum plaque and tartar on teeth surface.

Gingivitis

Plaque, Tartar, and mild bad breath.

Early Periodontal Disease

Inflammation/Swelling and Moderate Bad Breath.

Advanced Periodontal Disease

Bleeding gums, mobile teeth, and Severe Bad Breath.

Established Periodontal Disease

Pustular discharge, bleeding and Severe Bad Breath.