Keeping your dog's mouth clean is important for their overall health. Our Wisconsin Dells vets share the importance of getting your dog professional teeth cleanings and the cost factors associated with it.
Does your dog need their teeth cleaned?
About dog teeth cleanings
It is widely assumed that dogs clean their own teeth by chewing on toys or bones, but that is not all that they need to maintain healthy teeth and gums. A dental exam for your dog will be needed first to determine if they need cleaning and what will need to be done.
When you bring your dog in for a teeth cleaning, we'll start by taking X-rays of your dog's mouth to gauge the health of the jaw and tooth roots. After the X-rays have been taken, a veterinarian will need to scale and polish the teeth to remove plaque and tartar, depending on your dog's oral health. Your veterinarian may need to safely fill or extract teeth from your dog’s mouth so they will be put under a general anesthetic.
Your pet should start recovering within a few hours of waking up, but it could take 24-48 hours to fully recover. Your pet may seem drowsy and may lack an appetite. If they remain drowsy, disoriented, or lacking in appetite after about 24 hours, you should give your veterinarian a call right away.
Getting your dog's teeth cleaned should not cause them any additional pain. Most dogs are fine after waking up and just want to eat.
How much does a dog's dental cleaning cost?
Many pet owners call to ask us, "How much is a dog teeth cleaning?"
To get an accurate cost estimate please contact us and book an appointment. When it comes to the cost of the cleaning of your dog’s teeth, it will depend on the condition of your dog's teeth and what work needs to be done. There are extra treatments that may cost more than others. Some extras could include any special treatments for periodontal disease or tooth extractions.
How often does your dog need a professional teeth cleaning?
Most veterinarians will recommend bringing your dog in for a professional cleaning once a year for most breeds, but a few breeds, especially smaller ones, may need two visits a year to prevent loss of teeth. After a cleaning, your veterinarian can recommend the appropriate cleaning schedule for your dog.
You should also schedule a cleaning if you notice increasingly bad breath, bleeding gums, or if you find they are having trouble eating.
How dog's teeth are cleaned
When you bring your dog into the veterinarian’s office, their visit could include a dental examination, teeth cleaning, and polishing to remove the tartar and disease-causing plaque.
This will be done while your dog is asleep, for everyone's safety. Once your dog is asleep, the veterinarian, most likely with the help of a veterinarian assistant will examine the mouth, making sure to check the teeth and gums for any abnormalities that could be cause for concern.
The vet will use a probe to assess gum bleeding to confirm the gums are not bleeding excessively. They will also clear food debris and decay from any pockets that may have developed.
If the veterinarian does notice any kind of dental disease that is advanced or advancing, they may not be able to save the badly affected tooth, which would then need to be extracted either during the procedure or at a later time.
Why regular cleanings are important?
It is important to get your dog's teeth cleaned by a professional for their oral and overall health. The most important reasons include: preventing tooth/teeth loss, preventing bad breath (halitosis), managing and preventing dental disease, managing and preventing oral pain, and most seriously, preventing organ damage.