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4 out of 5 pets have dental disease. Does yours? Statistic based on Australian research and applies to pets 3 years and over.

What causes dental disease?

Dental disease, is inflammation of the teeth and gums caused by the build-up of plaque and tartar. Plaque is made up of food particles, saliva and bacteria, which sticks to the surface of the tooth and if not removed it will calcify into tartar and progress from there. This takes place above and below the gum line and over time can lead to the destruction of the supporting tissue of the teeth including the bone, resulting in bad breath, oral pain and loss of teeth.

Plaque - Food particles - Saliva - Bacteria | Tartar - Plaque has calcified and turned into tartar

What are the signs of dental disease?

There are a number of signs that can alert you to the possibility that your pet is living with dental disease.

Discoloured teeth or tartar build-up | Bad breath | Drooling or rubbing at the mouth | Reluctance to allow teeth or mouth to be looked at | Redness or bleeding of the gums | Changes in appetite or eating habits | Discoloured teeth or tartar build-up | Broken, loose or missing teeth

Before and after dental procedures

Cat with Grade 2 dental disease. Before image. After image. Dog with Grade 3 dental disease. Before image. After image.

How can I help my pet have a healthy mouth?

Regular health checks will help to identify any development of dental disease and will allow your veterinarian to discuss the best management plan for your pet. For adult cats and dogs with existing dental disease, a dental procedure under general anaesthetic is often necessary to get their mouth back into top condition. This will allow us to start preventative measures with a clean mouth and prevent, or slow down, dental disease developing again in the future. There are things you can do at home such as introducing vet diets, in particular dental diets that can significantly reduce the development of tartar. Some chewy treats are also specifically designed to reduce tartar, promote healthy gums and freshen breath. If your pet is calm and relaxed, daily brushing of their teeth with a specially designed pet toothbrush and pet toothpaste is also very beneficial. For more information about how to keep your pet’s teeth healthy talk to your local Animates Vetcare team.

Dental disease in cats and dogs

How to brush your cat's teeth | Learn moreHow to brush your dogs' teeth | Learn more

Caring for your cat's dental healthCaring for your dog's dental health