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Posted on 09-20-2012
I'm sure you've gone to sit down on the couch and here they come, your dog or cat jumping up to join you and had spontaneous hair loss due to the horrific breath now seeping into your personal space----whoaaa, what is that? THAT is the lovely odor of dental disease. The last time you had them at the vet's office you heard..."looks like he's got about grade III dental disease and could use a teeth cleaning as soon as possible."
We all do it, we procrastinate and then before you know another 6 months or a year has gone by and the dental disease is even worse during that time in our own minds we're thinking man---get away, your breath is horrible! All their really trying to do is gently remind us that they really DO need a professional dental cleaning. They want some love and some petting but they are also thinking, come on mom---dad---sister, somebody, help a guy out here! I can hardly stand myself! I have morning breath all the time and my teeth feel like they have on winter sweaters!
All kidding aside, dental disease is dangerous and can cause serious health issues with the body's internal organs like the heart, kidneys and liver. Chronic dental disease fosters an environment of bacteria in the mouth that far exceeds normal amounts and causes odor, pain inflammation, gingivitis and eventually permanent damage to the gums and even bone loss.
Our pets don't have the opportunity to brush their teeth, floss or use Listerine. We have to do the right thing by taking them in for their regular exams and have the vet determine what their dental health status is and what they recommend in the best interests of our pets. There's no doubt that preventive care and regular teeth cleanings not only keep your pets healthy but save you time and money in the long term. A typical routine dental for grade I or II costs about $200-250. A dog for instance with grade IV dental disease and in need of multiple extractions (oral surgery) antibiotics and pain medicine pre-operative and both medications to go home with and continue for several days can be upwards of $500 and more depending on the size of the dog and the type of teeth that needed to be extracted and how many.
What was that saying from Alice in Wonderland? "Sometimes I give myself very good advice." With that said, I am making an appointment right now for my own dog to have her teeth cleaned, why? Because she has "horrible" breath, I've procrastinated long enough and I know she's going to "gently remind me" tonight that it is time. Oh yeah, and I do love her and would like her to be around for as long as possible comfortable and happy.
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