Quality Veterinary Dentistry
It's important for cats and dogs to have a regular dental care routine because it's an important part of their oral and overall health. Although, most pets don't receive the appropriate level of oral hygiene care they need to maintain healthy teeth and gums.
At our Laguna Woods veterinary hospital, we offer comprehensive dental care services for cats and dogs, including the basics such as dental exams, teeth cleanings, and polishing, as well as dental X-rays and surgeries.
We also do our best to provide dental health education to our clients to teach them about implementing at-home dental care for their pets.
Dental Surgery in Laguna Woods
We realize how overwhelming it can be to find our your pet needs dental surgery. Our veterinary team strives to make this process as easy as possible, for both you and your cat or dog.
We'll do everything possible to make sure your pet's experience with us is as stress-free as possible. We will explain every step of the process to you in detail prior to your pet's procedure, including the requirements for preparation and post-operative care.
We offer dental surgeries, tooth extractions, and gum disease treatments for cats and dogs.
Pet Teeth Cleaning & Exams
Similar to your annual checkup at the dentist, your dog or cat should see us for a dental exam at least once a year. If your pet is more prone to dental problems than others they might have to see us more frequently.
Laguna Hills Animal Hospital is able to evaluate, diagnose and treat dental health problems in cats and dogs.
If you see your cat or dog displaying any of these symptoms, you should bring them in for a dental checkup.
- Bad breath
- Discolored teeth
- Tartar buildup
- Pain or swelling in or around the mouth
- Bleeding from the mouth
- Loose and/or broken teeth
- Extra teeth or retained baby teeth
- Reduced appetite or refusal to eat
- Abnormal chewing, drooling, or dropping food from the mouth
Your vet will complete a comprehensive pre-anesthetic physical assessment for your pet prior to their dental exam.
We will take blood and urine analyses to make sure it's safe for your cat or dog to undergo anesthesia. Additional diagnostics, such as chest radiographs or an ECG might also be conducted.
When your pet is under anesthesia, we will complete a full oral examination (tooth by tooth) and charting.
Then, we clean and polish the teeth (including under the gum line), take X-rays, and apply a fluoride treatment to every tooth.
The last step is to apply a dental sealant to prevent plaque from attaching to the enamel. If your vet discovers advanced periodontal disease they will establish a treatment plan and explain it to you.
We recommend scheduling a follow-up examination two weeks after the initial assessment and treatment appointment.
At this visit, we will discuss implementing an at-home tooth brushing routine for your pet. We can also recommend products that could help improve your cat or dog's oral health.
FAQs About Pet Dental Care
Below we share the answers to the questions that are asked most frequently by our clients regarding pet dental care.
- Why do pets need their teeth cleaned?
Cats and dogs can develop periodontal disease or tooth decay as a result of poor oral health habits.
Similar to people, when animals eat, plaque sticks to their teeth and can build up into tartar if it isn't brushed away on a regular basis.
This can cause infections in the mouth, periodontal disease, tooth decay, as well as loose or missing teeth. This makes routine dental care important to preventing pain or disease in the gums.
- How can I tell if my pet has oral hygiene issues?
Did you know your pet's behavior can be an indication of oral health issues? If your pet is suffering from dental problems, they may drool excessively (the drool might contain pus or blood), or you may see them pawing at their mouth or teeth. Pet's might also yawn excessively, grind their teeth, or stop grooming sufficiently.
Other signs your pet may have an oral health problem include bad breath, tooth discoloration, and swollen gum. Sometimes animals might even suffer from pain that prevents them from eating. Learn more about signs and symptoms to the left under Pet Teeth Cleaning & Exams.
- What long-term problems can poor oral health potentially cause in my pet?
Other than causing problems like cavities, bad breath, severe periodontal disease, your pet's oral health issues, and conditions could lead to disease in the liver, kidney, heart, as well as other areas throughout your pet's body.
Cysts or tumors could develop. Your cat or dog may also not feel well in general (if you have ever suffered from a toothache, you know how it can impact your mood!). In addition, diseases related to oral health conditions can shorten the lifespan of your pet and cause significant pain.
This is why regular dental care is so essential to animals' physical health and wellbeing.
- What happens during my pet's teeth cleaning appointment?
During your pet’s routine oral exam, your vet will assess their mouth and check for oral health conditions or any symptoms that need to be treated.
The vet will clean tartar and other debris from your cat's or dog's teeth. If cavities, gingivitis, or other conditions have to be treated, your vet will explain them to you and offer you advice on the actions you should take.
In some cases, surgery will be needed to treat serious conditions. Your pet will be provided with anesthesia before their dental procedure to ensure they are comfortable and do not experience any pain. But, your animal friend will require special care after their surgery.
If you see your pet displaying any of these symptoms, book a dental appointment with us.
- What should I do at home to keep my pet’s teeth clean between dental appointments?
At home, you should brush your pet's teeth on a regular basis and give them dental chew toys. These will help eliminate plaque.
Do not let your cat or dog chew on items that will damage their teeth, such as bones, toys, or objects that are too hard. Always contact your vet with any questions or concerns regarding your pet's oral health.
Veterinary Dentistry: Anesthesia & Your Pet's Oral Health
Cats and dogs don't know what is happening during dental procedures, and will often respond to dental procedures by biting or struggling.
Just like the anesthesia given to nervous or anxious patients by dentists, our Laguna Woods vets provide anesthesia to all of our patients before performing dental procedures. This puts less stress on the animals and allows us to X-ray their mouth as needed.