Routinely administered dental care is a critical component of your cat or dog's oral and overall health. However, most of our pets don't get the oral hygiene they actually need to keep their teeth and gums healthy.
At our White House veterinary hospital, we provide dental care for your pet, from the basics like dental exams and teeth cleanings to dental X-rays and surgeries.
We also make a point of providing dental health education to pet owners about home dental care for their pets.
We know that discovering that your pet needs oral surgery can be an overwhelming prospect. We strive to make this process as stress-free as possible, both for you and for your pet.
We'll do everything we can to ensure your pet's experience with us is comfortable and easy. We'll break down each step of the process to you in detail before the procedure, including preparation and post-operative care requirements.
We are proud to offer jaw fracture repair surgeries, tooth extractions and gum disease treatments for cats and dogs.
Just like your own annual checkup at your human dentist, your cat or dog should come in for a routine dental exam at least once each year. Pets who are more prone to dental health issues than others may need to see us more often.
White House Animal Hospital can assess, diagnose and treat dental health problems in cats and dogs.
If you notice any of the following symptoms in your pet, it's time for a dental checkup.
A thorough pre-anesthetic physical assessment will be completed for your pet before the dental exam.
We will take blood tests to ensure it is safe for your pet to undergo anesthesia. Extra diagnostic tests, such as chest radiographs or an ECG may also be conducted.
Once your pet is under anesthesia, we will conduct a complete oral examination (tooth by tooth) and charting.
Next, the teeth are cleaned and polished (including under the gum line) and x-rays are taken. We then apply a fluoride treatment to each tooth.
The last step of treatment is the application of a dental sealant to your pet's teeth to prevent plaque from attaching to their enamel. If advanced periodontal disease is found, the veterinarian will develop a treatment plan and discuss it with you.
Ideally, a follow-up examination will be scheduled two weeks after the initial assessment and treatment appointment.
During this follow-up visit, we will discuss implementing a tooth-brushing and oral hygiene routine for your pet at home. We will also be able to recommend products that can help you to improve your pet's oral health.
Here are some of the most frequently asked questions from our patients about pet dental care.
Our pets can develop periodontal disease or tooth decay as a consequence of poor oral health.
Just like in humans, when animals eat, plaque sticks to their teeth and can build up into tartar if not brushed away regularly.
This can lead to infections in the mouth, periodontal disease, tooth decay, and even loose or missing teeth. That's why regular dental care is essential to preventing pain or disease in the gums.
Did you know behavior may be an indication of oral health problems? If your pet is experiencing dental problems, they drool excessively (and the drool may contain pus or blood), or you may notice them pawing at their mouth or teeth. They may also yawn excessively, grind their teeth, or stop grooming sufficiently.
Other signs of oral health problems include bad breath, swollen gums, and tooth discoloration. Some pets may even suffer from pain that keeps them from eating. Read more about symptoms to the left under Pet Teeth Cleaning & Exams.
Besides causing problems ranging from cavities and bad breath to severe periodontal disease, oral health issues and conditions can lead to disease in the liver, kidney, heart, and other areas throughout your pet's body.
Cysts or tumors may develop. Your pet may also not feel well in general (if you've ever had a toothache, you know how it can affect your mood!). In addition, diseases related to oral health conditions can shorten the lifespan of your pet and cause significant pain.
This is why regular dental care is so essential to animals' physical health and wellbeing.
During your pet’s regular oral exam, the vet will examine his or her mouth and look for oral health conditions or any symptoms needing treatment.
Our vets will clean the tartar and other debris from your dog or cat's teeth. If we find cavities, gingivitis, or other oral health conditions that require treatment, we will explain them to you and provide advice on what actions you should take.
In some cases, surgery will be needed to treat serious conditions. Your pet will be provided with anesthesia before their dental procedure to ensure they are comfortable and do not experience any pain. However, special care will be needed post-surgery.
If you notice any of these symptoms, schedule a dental appointment with us.
When at home, you should brush your pet's teeth on a routine basis, giving them dental chew toys to help eliminate plaque and clear away debris.
Do not allow them to chew on things that will damage their teeth, such as bones, toys or objects that are too hard. Always contact your vet with any questions or concerns regarding your pet's oral health.
Our pets don't understand what is happening during a dental exam or procedure and even the most tolerant dogs or cats often react negatively to having their mouth handled.
Similar to the anesthesia provided to nervous or anxious patients by dentists, our White House vets provide anesthesia to all of our patients before performing dental procedures. This puts less stress on the animals and allows us to x-ray their mouth as needed.
White House Animal Hospital is accepting new patients! Our experienced vets are passionate about the health of White House companion animals. Get in touch today to book your pet's first appointment.