National Pet Dental Health Month
February is National Pet Dental Health Month and its the perfect opportunity to address the significance of pet dental care.
Often put to the back of our minds, many of us may not even realise that our pet is suffering from a dental related disease.
What is dental disease?
Dental disease can occur when plaque forms on the surface of the teeth, which then turns to tartar if ignored. Tartar is often the cause of other problematic conditions such as gum inflammation and tooth decay.
Effects of dental disease
As gum inflammation progresses, the gums will become more inflamed and damaged. This damage can allow bacteria to access the pets bloodstream, causing the bacteria to travel to other parts of the body. This bacteria can have a negative effect on vital organs such as the heart, kidneys and brain. Whilst the system tries to fight the invasion of unwanted bacteria, the body can suffer from depletion of immunity making your pet more prone to contracting other illnesses.
Tooth decay caused by dental disease can cause localised pain, potentially making it difficult for the animal to eat.
Signs of dental problems
- Bad breath (halitosis)
- Difficulty in eating
- Red gums (caused by inflammation, gums should be pink)
- Bleeding gums
- Excessive drooling
How to prevent dental disease
The best way to prevent dental disease is to ensure plaque does not build up on your pets teeth.
- Brushing from a young age can help to keep plaque at bay. Using a soft nylon bristle toothbrush daily will help to remove unwanted plaque.
Dr Mercola toothbrushes are made from strong sustainable bamboo, so if pets chew the toothbrush whilst brushing the fibrous texture can actually aid in cleaning the teeth even further.
(Dr Mercola Eco Friendly Toothbrush: Available in small and large £5.99)
- Natural dental products can be a good alternative if you are unable to brush your pets teeth or to use in conjunction with brushing.
Dr Mercola Dental Gel contains grapefruit seed and thyme oil extracts which can help to keep the teeth clean. This product can be placed along the gum line, which will then be mixed with the saliva to help coat the entire mouth. Also containing peppermint, it can help to tackle bad breath.
(Dr Mercola Dental Gel: £19.99)
- Diet can also have a big impact on dental health. A diet high in sugary carbohydrates can cause additional plaque as your pet doesn't have the necessary enzymes in the saliva to clear this from their teeth.
Low carbohydrate foods and foods containing seaweed could help to keep the teeth clean.
The enzyme found on the outside of seaweed breaks down and cuts through the bacteria bio film on the teeth.
Raw fed pets are also less likely to suffer from dental disease. Raw bones are a natural toothbrush and the chewing action can help to remove plaque and massage the gums. Just ensure the bones you are feeding are suitable for your pet.
(Canagan Dental Containing Seaweed: 2kg £15.49)
- Chews can aid in the removal of plaque. A low carbohydrate, natural chew will ensure that the teeth are not being re-coated with ingredients which are harmful for the teeth.
(Whimzee Vegetable Stick Chew: 0.75p)
If you have any questions about your pet’s oral hygiene or would like to find out more about it we can help. Give us a call on 0330 229 0750 or email email@example.com