February is dental health awareness month and dental health is a critical component of overall health for humans, dogs, and cats. Even though dogs and cats can get many of the same oral diseases and issues as humans, cats and dogs are at a higher risk of suffering from periodontal disease rather than cavities or tooth decay. Periodontal disease (also known as dental disease), is a condition in which the tissues around the teeth become inflamed and infected. The mildest form and only reversible stage of dental disease is gingivitis (inflammation of the gums). If left untreated, periodontal disease can lead to major mouth issues such as tooth root abscesses, bone infection of the jaw, and other nasty things. Periodontal disease can also affect pets’ health beyond the mouth. When a pet develops dental disease, the related infection bacteria that reside within the mouth can enter the bloodstream and travel to other areas within the body. There are three organs that are especially susceptible to the spread of oral bacteria: the heart, the liver, and the kidneys.
According to the American Veterinary Association, around 80% of dogs and 70% of cats are affected by dental disease by age 3. It is an important part of pet health to know the warning signs of dental disease and take steps to prevent periodontal disease.
Much like humans’ dental health, it can be easy to help your pet keep their teeth and mouth in tip-top shape with a few preventive actions. As we go through February, we want to provide you with tips and knowledge that will help you help you and your pets the most, please answer the following questions!
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