An often overlooked aspect of your pet's health care is proper dental hygiene. This is as important for animals as it is for humans. Contrary to popular belief, a dog or cat is not supposed to have bad breath.
Just like in people, your pet's teeth can gather plaque after eating. When plaque builds up and hardens it becomes a coarse brown substance called tartar. As tartar accumulates it can work its way under the gums and cause painful infections as well as gum disease. This goes on in the mouths of dogs and cats just like it does in people. Because you brush your teeth every day, probably three times, you avoid this harmful build up.
Issues with your pets teeth can lead to even more serious problems in the future. Gum disease is an infection that is constantly circulating through your pet's blood stream. Over time, poor dental care can lead to heart failure in dogs and kidney failure in cats. These conditions can be difficult to control and often fatal to your pet.
It is estimated that 80% of the pets in South Florida need dental cleaning due to lack of brushing. Dr. Borrego recommends brushing your pet's teeth at least twice a week to keep the buildup of tartar at a minimum. Animal General Hospital offers specially designed toothbrushes and toothpaste specifically for pets. Remember that a dog or cat's sense of taste and smell is far more acute than that of a human and the strong mint taste of toothpastes for people will be extremely awful for them. If brushing your pet's teeth is too difficult, Dr. Borrego can send you with a special dental rinse that is simply sprayed onto the pet's teeth.
Aside from regular brushing, Dr. Borrego recommends that your pet undergo a routine, professional cleaning. This is needed every few years to remove any excess plaque buildup. Our office is equipped with a full dental facility. This allows Dr. Borrego to offer dental services ranging from periodic dental cleanings to full scale dental repair.