A Look at Periodontal Disease in Pets
Periodontal disease is a common, if often overlooked, risk for pets. If your pet develops
periodontal disease and you don’t see your veterinarian for care
in time, he or she could suffer some significant consequences, from tooth
loss to systemic health problems. Here are the facts that every pet owner
needs to know about periodontal disease.
How likely is it that my pet has periodontal disease?
According to the
American Veterinary Dental College, the majority of dogs and cats have evidence of periodontal disease by
age three (3). In recent years, at the urging of their veterinarians,
pet owners have become more aware of the risk of periodontal disease and
how they can prevent it, but it remains an extremely common problem. If
you haven’t talked to your veterinarian about periodontal disease,
do so at your next animal hospital visit. He or she may recommend professional
dental cleanings and home oral hygiene treatments to protect your pet’s gums.
What symptoms are common?
Periodontal disease may not cause any symptoms that we humans can easily
perceive until it is well advanced. If you notice that your pet has chronically
bad breath, see the veterinarian for a checkup. Contrary to popular belief,
bad breath is not normal in animals and is often caused by periodontal
disease. In later stages, you may notice your pet’s gums appear
red and inflamed or that he or she appears hesitant to chew his or her
food. If your pet’s teeth look discolored or decayed, that can also
be an indication that periodontal disease is present.
Why is treating periodontal disease important?
Periodontal disease can affect your pet in the same way it affects you.
Your pet may lose his or teeth as well as the gum tissue and bone that
support them. The tooth and gum infection can enter the bloodstream and
cause or worsen heart, liver, and kidney problems. Periodontal disease
can also cause pain and interfere with your pet’s ability to eat
normally and be happy.
dental care seriously at Chastain Veterinary Medical Group and can help you treat
and prevent periodontal disease in your pet. To schedule a consultation
at our Animal Hospital in McKinney call (972) 529-5033, or for our Hospital
in North Dallas, please call (972) 239-1309.