dental disease in dogs and cats

cat with bacteria

Extra-stinky pet breath is just the start

Dental disease begins with plaque on your pet’s teeth. If plaque isn’t removed with regular teeth cleaning, it hardens into browny-yellow tartar both above and below the gumline. This crusty, bacteria-laden brown gunk is not only smelly, but can lead to advanced dental disease, severe pain, tooth loss, and bacterial infection.

Even the bounciest or mellowist pet can still suffer discomfort from dental disease, and benefit from regular dental care.

Signs and symptoms of dental disease

Cats and dogs are pros at hiding pain, so it helps to know the symptoms of periodontal disease.
Bacterial buildup

Early signs mean it's time for a checkup

  • Bad breath (halitosis) from bacterial buildup 
  • Yellow or brown tartar on teeth 
  • Red, inflamed, or bleeding gums
Vector of Tooth

Advanced signs need immediate veterinary care
  • Loose, damaged, or missing teeth
  • Difficulty chewing, chewing on only one side of the mouth, or dropping food out of their mouths 
  • Loss of appetite and weight loss 
  • Facial swelling, or nasal discharge, which may indicate a dental abscess 
  • Behavior changes, like not playing as much with toys or chew sticks 

Help keep your pet’s mouth healthy and happy

Make tooth brushing part of your daily petcare routine, bring your pet in for regular mouth checks, and schedule a yearly professional dental cleaning to help eliminate tartar you can’t reach. 

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