Posts from January, 2018
Most of us aren’t exactly excited about looking into our pet’s mouths, but when it comes to pet dental care, the saying “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure” is absolutely true. Studies show that by age three, 4 out of 5 dogs have some form of periodontal disease. Other studies report that 50 to 90 percent of cats over four years of age have some form of dental disease. The veterinarians and knowledgeable staff at Harris Parkway Animal Hospital are here to give you the basics of this common but preventable problem.
What is Periodontal Disease?
Periodontal disease begins when bacteria in the mouth form plaque. Left unchecked, plaque can accumulate along the gum line and cause inflammation called gingivitis. Plaque hardens into tartar along the gum line, but the real problems begin when the bacteria in plaque travel below the gum line. Inflammation and infection affect the internal structures of the tooth, root, and even the bone underneath.
In its more severe stages, periodontal disease can cause tooth fractures or tooth loss. Unfortunately, if left untreated, bacteria can also find its way into the bloodstream and can affect the heart, liver, and kidneys.