Comprehensive Dental Care for Cats & Dogs
Routine dental care is a critical component of cats' and dogs' oral and overall health, but most pets don't get the oral hygiene care they need to keep their teeth and gums healthy.
At our Diablo View veterinary hospital, we provide advanced dental care for your pet that ranges from the basics like dental exams, teeth cleanings and polishing to dental X-rays and surgeries.
We also make a point of providing advanced dental health education to pet owners about home dental care for their pets.
Dental Surgery in Pleasant Hill, CA
We understand that finding out that your pet needs dental surgery can be overwhelming. We strive to make this process as stress-free as possible, for both you and your pet.
We'll do everything we can to make your pet's stay with us as pleasant and easy as possible. Before the operation, we will go through each stage of the procedure with you in detail, including the preparatory and post-operative care needs.
We offer surgical extractions, gingivectomy and soft tissue mass removal for dogs and cats.
Pet Teeth Cleaning & Exams
Your dog or cat should come in for a dental examination at least once every year. Pets who are more prone to dental problems than others may need to see us more often.
Diablo View Veterinary 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:
- Tartar buildup
- Reduced appetite or refusal to eat
- Bad breath
- Extra teeth or retained baby teeth
- Bleeding from the mouth
- Loose and/or broken teeth
- Discolored teeth
- Pain or swelling in or around the mouth
- Abnormal chewing, drooling or dropping food from the mouth
Before the dental exam, we will conduct a thorough pre-anesthetic physical assessment for your pet.
We will take blood and urine analyses to ensure it's safe for your pet to undergo anesthesia. Additional diagnostics, such as chest radiographs or an ECG may also be conducted.
Once your pet is sedated, we will do a thorough oral examination (tooth by tooth) and charting.
Your pet’s teeth are cleaned using an ultrasonic/piezo scaler above and below the gum line. Pockets are evaluated and radiographs are taken.
If there are fracture teeth that have not penetrated the internal structures – bonded sealants may be applied to save the tooth.
If there is a fracture that does penetrate then options are discussed that may include – vital pulpotomy, endodontic therapy or extraction.
Ideally, a follow-up examination will be scheduled two weeks after the initial assessment and treatment appointment.
During this visit, we will discuss implementing teeth brushing at home. We can also recommend products that can help improve your pet's oral health.
FAQs about Pet Dental Care
Here are some of the most frequently asked questions from our patients about pet dental care.
- Why do pets need their teeth cleaned?
When animals eat, plaque adheres to their teeth and, if not cleaned away on a regular basis, can harden into tartar.
This can result in oral infections, periodontal disease, and even loose or missing teeth. That is why regular dental care is critical for preventing gum discomfort and disease.
- How can I tell if my pet has oral hygiene issues?
Behavior can be an indicator of dental health issues, so if your pet has dental difficulties, you may notice them drooling excessively (with pus or blood mixed with the drool) or pawing at their mouth or teeth. They may also yawn excessively, grind their teeth or fail to groom enough.
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.
- What long-term problems can poor oral health potentially cause in my pet?
Besides causing problems ranging from 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 form. Your pet may also be feeling under the weather in general (if you've ever had a toothache, you know how it may impact your attitude!). Furthermore, disorders associated with oral health issues can decrease your pet's lifetime and cause severe discomfort.
This is why regular dental care is so essential to animals' physical health and wellbeing.
- What happens during pet teeth cleaning appointments?
During your pet’s oral exam the doctor will examine the mouth including the teeth, gums, tongue and throat. The doctor will then discuss the oral health and the symptoms needing treatment.
Your veterinarian will clean tartar and other debris from your cat's or dog's teeth. If gingivitis or other conditions need to be addressed, they will then explain these to you and provide advice on which 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.
- What should I do at home to keep my pet’s teeth clean between dental appointments?
At home, you should brush your pet's teeth on a regular basis and give them dental chew toys. These will help eliminate plaque.
Avoid letting your pets chew on things that will damage their teeth, such as bones or objects that are too hard. Always contact your veterinarian with any questions or concerns regarding your pet's oral health.
Veterinary Dentistry: Anesthesia & Your Pet's Oral Health
Cats and dogs do not comprehend what is going on during dental treatments and may respond by resisting or biting.
Similar to the anesthesia provided to nervous or anxious patients by dentists, our Diablo View veterinarians 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.