Toronto Veterinarians - Pet Wellness Network

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Contact Willowdale Animal Hospital

Open 24 Hours, Year Round

256 Sheppard Ave. West
Toronto, ON M2N 1N3
(416) 222-5409

February is National Pet Dental Health Month

We all like to keep our pearly whites in top shape through daily care and regular visits to the dentist. But what most of us don’t know is that dental hygiene is just as important to your dog and it’s overall heath.

Much like with humans a dose of prevention and proper care are key to good dental health for your dog.

According to surveys and statistics gathered by the American Veterinarians Medical Association, periodontal disease, tartar, and swollen gums are the most common ailments vets see when they examine pets.

Proper dental care can begin with a trip to the vet, who will let you know if your pet needs a cleaning or other periodontal care.

The easiest way for you to keep an eye on the status of your pup’s dental situation is to take a peek in your dog’s mouth and inspect the area (including lips, teeth and gums) for anything unusual.

For those of you who may find this a tricky endeavour, your vet will be able to inspect your dog’s teeth, mouth, lips and gums during check-up examinations.

Make sure you keep on top of these and book a visit to the vet for your pet every 6 months.

But between visits, there are a few things you can do for your pup’s dental health at home:

1. Use ONLY toothpaste made for dogs. NEVER use human toothpaste – Human toothpaste can make your dog very ill and cause a flurry of complications. It’s also important to do the same for oral rinses.

2. Make daily brushing a part of your routine – This will reduce plaque and tarter build up and save your dog from needing extractions in the future.

3. Use a toothbrush designed for use on dogs – A finger toothbrush often works best.

4. Don’t be afraid to ask questions – Most vets will even be able to give you a demonstration of various dental care techniques during your check-up.

5. Use dental cleaning treats, NOT real bones – Real bones can cause gastrointestinal issues and may also result in tooth fractures. 6. In some cases, specially formulated dental diets may be of great benefit. But be careful only to use these under the care of a veterinarian as they are truly therapeutic diets which are targeted for certain needs – they are not appropriate or necessary for some pets.

If you feel your dog may require a veterinary cleaning, or simply have questions about your pet’s oral hygiene, don’t hesitate to call one of the trained staff at a Toronto Pet Wellness Network Animal Hospital near you.

We’ll be happy to provide you tips or schedule a cleaning or demonstration.

For now we have provided you with this great dog dental care video from the American Veterinary Association.

Remember to think prevention and keep on smiling, The Team at Pet Wellness Network.

If you would like to find out more about Pet Dental Health Month, check out this great website from the American Veterinary Association.

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