Bad dental health can actually cause many problems besides bad breath (as if bad dog breath wasn’t bad enough). Dogs and cats with dental issues (tarter, inflamed gums, etc.) can actually absorb bacteria into the blood stream. These bacteria can settle in places like the heart, causing serious heart disease, the kidneys, or liver. All of these can cause serious health issues.teethafter As you can see above, the dog on the left has a normal mouth with healthy pink gums and no tarter build up on the teeth. The dog on the right has severe dental disease. Not all pets that need a dental are as severe as the dog on the right. We recommend a dental checkup as part of your dog’s yearly exam. What we do for a dog or cat dental… Dogs or cats that require a dental go through an initial exam to confirm that they are healthy enough to go under anesthesia for dental cleaning. This may require blood work for certain pets depending on age and health concerns. Once they are confirmed to be healthy they are dropped off at Woodington Veterinary in the morning and sedated and then placed under anesthesia using a combination of injectable medications. After they are under an endotracheal tube is passed and the dog is maintained under anesthesia, while having their ECG, oxygen and many other factors monitored. At this point an ultrasonic scaler is used to remove any plaque, debris and bacteria that are on the teeth. The teeth are then polished to have a nice smooth coating that lessens bacterial accumulation on the teeth and under the gum line. Any teeth that are dyeing may be removed as well. Pets recover very well from having teeth removed and generally, after a few days to let the gums heal, will return to their normal diet. Depending on the procedure, pets may go home on antibiotics or pain relief for a short period of time. Once the procedure is complete, the pet wake up peacefully and goes home at the end of the day. We are happy to answer any questions or concerns you might have. Please feel free to call us at 939-6406 or email us at