How do you feel when you go to the dentist? Is it scary? Is it uncomfortable, even painful sometimes? and we know what is happening too! Just imagine dogs and cats having to go through it without this understanding.
As you can imagine it is extremely difficult to fully asses an animal’s mouth, teeth and gums thoroughly in a fully conscious animal. A detailed examination is required to carry out the correct treatment.
Here at Swan Street Vet we perform a Comprehensive Oral Health Assessment and Treatment (COHAT). This means your Fur-Kid needs to be motionless for procedures like oral radiographs and insensible to the discomfort of periodontal probing, which is used to measure the pocket depths around the tooth. It is also essential to scale subgingivally (under the gum).
With the animal fully conscious there is high risk of injury to the operator, any people helping and the pet as sharp dental instruments are used. Even the slightest head movement can result in serious injuries to the oral tissues often with permanent consequences.
Despite the fact many animals will be able to be restrained or held still for the procedure (often with heavy physical restraint) they will be anxious throughout the experience. This can lead to your pet being head shy, not allowing dental examinations or tooth brushing, making thorough dental care a lot more difficult.
Without an anaesthetic, all that is removed is the visible calculus and tartar. It is not possible to clean subgingivally, which allows the bacteria present to continue to lodge in the area, potentially leading to systemic disease e.g cardiac or renal (Heart and kidneys).
Anaesthetic free dentistry is purely cosmetic, masking underlying dental issues causing a delay in treatment of dental disease and further impacting the animals health. Imagine the tooth ache from having a diseased tooth being left in your mouth for years because it looks clean!
This tooth appears fine, however upon x-ray the roots were abscessed and it required removal.
These ‘cleanings’ may seem like they cost less upfront, but the consequences of putting off appropriate dental care will mean it will end up costing far more in the long term.
For more information on Comprehensive Oral Health Assessment and Treatments please contact us and speak with or book in for a Complimentary dental examination, with one of our friendly nurses.
Click here for the Australian Veterinary Associations policy on Anaesthetic-Free Dentistry