Chastain Veterinary Medical Group
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A Look at Periodontal Disease in Pets

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.

We take 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.

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