Have you ever wondered if your dog’s teeth are healthy? And if they are not, how can you tell? In this article we’ll try to bring closer to you the importance of your pet’s dental hygiene, how can you tell if they have problems, what are the most common causes, and how to handle them.
Many dog owners neglect the health of their pets’ teeth, ignoring the fact that oral hygiene and health are as important to them in the quality of life as for humans, and that they can also suffer from the same dental issues as us, which if left untreated, cause numerous diseases throughout the body. Again, exactly the same as in humans.
Dogs also suffer from caries, gingivitis, and periodontal disease, which in turn can cause decay, poor quality, and tooth loss. The first sign of the problem is bad breath, which is by no means a normal occurrence as some uninformed owners hold because it can warn of some of the diseases of the teeth and oral cavity.
Here is a couple more information on how these problems often start…
Tooth diseases in dogs are almost identical to those in humans, as was stated earlier. The most common problem we encounter is the formation of plaque on which tartar then sticks. The plaque is light yellow in color and is easily removed when you scratch their teeth with your fingernail. Plaque formation occurs due to the fact that nowadays dogs are kept in a house or yard no longer having access to bones in their diet.
You are familiar with the fact that the dog is descended from the wolf. In nature, the wolf is a carnivore and feeds on raw meat. When it catches prey, it first feeds on meat and then bites the bones, which it hides for later if it does not gnaw immediately. The bone has cartilage and part of the tendon on it. It uses the cartilage it removes from the joints to build his own cartilage, and the tendons that are tough, he chews with his back teeth or tears with his incisors. By removing the cartilage, he scrapes his teeth and gums, which on the one hand removes plaque from the teeth and tartar, and by doing so, strengthens the gums.
Depending on the amount of plaque on the teeth and the need for cartilage, the dog’s interest in the bone can increase or decrease. So, if the plaque is almost gone and the dog chews the bone briefly that day, it means the plaque has not accumulated much. But if it has a large amount of plaque, the dog instantly feels a great need to chew bone, so it can spend several hours a day chewing.
On the other hand, owners are often confused and offer bone to a dog that has a large amount of plaque, but to their surprise, the dog is not interested in the bone at all. Why? Imagine yourself with sores on your gums and purulent inflammation of your gums. Would you then like to eat boiled corn on a cob or some other hard food that needs to be chewed? Certainly not. When tartar occurs, it becomes a problem that can only be solved regularly by a veterinarian. The dog then becomes helpless and dependent on the owner to visit the vet together. To learn more about the treatment they are given, visit this website.
This can trigger other issues…
As the micro space between the teeth and the gums increases under the influence (pushing) of plaque, which allows bacteria, viruses and fungi to stay in that space, secrete toxins and create inflammation. At this stage, your pet has bad breath. So bad breath = purulent gingivitis. Initially, the inflammation remains localized only in the oral cavity, but soon microorganisms penetrate the blood and the inflammation becomes generalized. Depending on the strength of the immune system and the type of microorganism, the body defends itself for some time and keeps microorganisms under control, but over time and the growing number and type of microorganisms, the immune system weakens and diseases of certain internal organs: kidneys, heart, liver…
So, what are the signs based on which you can guess there might be an issue…
You’ll know by regularly examining your pet’s mouth. However, if you have trouble examining your pet’s mouth, here are a few other warning signs:
- It won’t let you touch its head: if your pet does not allow you to touch one side of his face, mouth, or the whole head it may be a sign of pain, which may indicate decayed teeth.
- Difficulty eating and chewing: eating carefully, chewing with only one side of your mouth, and eating carefully can be signs of toothache.
- Salivation: an unusual or large amount of saliva may be a warning sign.
- Dirty saliva: dirty or bloody saliva can be the result of dental problems.
- More frequent sneezing: severe periodontitis can even cause bone loss between the nasal and oral cavities, leading to a runny nose.
- Blood on toys, when chewing or eating: if you find dirty or bloody saliva on toys or in your dog’s water container, it may be time for a dental checkup.
Sometimes anxious pet owners can think their dog has rotten teeth and wonder what they should do, but they don’t really have anything to worry about. These things may seem alarming, but they can actually be harmless:
- Black Gums: If your dog has black gums but no bad breath, it may be something a pet is born with, like freckles
- Wrong tooth position: if the dog has a protruding tooth but the plaque has not yet accumulated around or behind it, it does not necessarily have to be extracted. However, you may need to brush and check it more often than normal teeth.
A good piece of advice at the end of the article would be not to neglect your pet’s health. When they are well taken care of, they will return in a good mood, and be the best company a man can have.