Veterinary Dentistry In Myrtle Beach, SC

Veterinary Dentistry In Myrtle Beach, SC

Pet dental care is important in our canine and feline companions. Did you know good oral health can extend your pet’s lifespan an average of 2-3 years?  Our pets can suffer from many dental diseases and bad breath is only one indicator. Proper pet dental care can prevent many problems, such as tooth loss, periodontal disease, infections, dental-related cardiac disease or kidney disease, and difficulty eating. At Coastal Veterinary Care, we provide cat and dog dental cleanings to keep your pet’s teeth and gums healthy.

Pet Dental Care at Home

While at-home dental care does not reverse dental disease, it can help deter tartar build-up although most pets will still need dental cleanings. The best way to clean your pet’s teeth is with once-daily brushing. You can find animal-friendly toothpaste at most pet supply stores. Regular toothpaste intended for human use contains ingredients such as xylitol, which is safe for us but is toxic to dogs. Soft-bristled toothbrushes or finger brushes are most appropriate for brushing your pet’s teeth.

And don’t worry about making your pet uncomfortable. With time and training, most animals learn to tolerate tooth brushing. Just be sure to approach your pet gently and slowly. Allow them to get used to the sensation and brush their teeth frequently.  If it is not safe to brush your pet’s teeth, refrain from doing so. 

Another option, particularly for canine dental health, is the use of dental products approved by the veterinary oral health council such as soft chews with supervision, enzymatic powders,  or oral rinses.

  • Dental diseases
  • Cataracts
  • Ear infections
  • Skin problems
  • Growths or cancers
  • Parasites
  • Organ dysfunction
  • Diabetes

If your cat is due for vaccines or a booster shot, they will also receive those during their check up. All of these procedures give our veterinary staff a clear picture of your cat’s health, so we can determine the best course of action if problems arise. 

Why Go to the Vet for Pet Dental Cleanings?

Even with adequate home care, it’s good to bring your pet in for a professional cleaning if your veterinarian recommends this procedure. Just like human teeth, animal teeth have many areas that regular brushing can miss. In addition, animals have evolved to hide any signs of pain or weakness from potential predators. So, if your pet is suffering from an oral health issue, they may go on eating and acting normally despite a worsening condition. However, a trained eye can spot any problems that arise, despite your pet’s behavior.

Having your pet’s teeth cleaned regularly is very important. Putting off your dog or cat’s teeth cleaning can lead to multiple problems such as tooth loss and gum disease. In addition, gum disease is the most common dental condition in dogs and cats. It’s so common that by the time your pet is three years old, they will likely show signs of periodontal disease. If left untreated, periodontal disease can progress into other issues such as cardiac and kidney problems. Early detection is key to stopping the progression of periodontal disease in your pet. 

Be on the lookout for any signs that your pet requires attention from a veterinarian, such as altered eating patterns, excessive drooling, bad breath, discolored teeth, loose teeth, or bleeding from the gums. Without proper care, these issues can worsen and lead to bigger concerns that are more difficult and expensive to treat.

What Happens During A Pet Dental Cleaning

Your pet’s veterinarian will check for halitosis (bad breath) and evidence of dental diseases such as swelling of the gums or tartar; in addition to recommending lab work to evaluate your pet’s overall internal organ function.  During your pet’s dental appointment, general anesthesia is used for sedation so that the veterinarian can perform a thorough oral exam, take dental radiographs (x-rays) to evaluate the teeth you cannot see under the gum, probe for pockets, check for tumors or foreign objects, and then a technician cleans and polishes the teeth. The American College of Veterinary Dentists advises general anesthesia for a thorough exam and cleaning, as an awake pet could choke, injure itself, or experience pain, etc.

Veterinary dentistry includes scaling and polishing, just like our own dental care. Plaque is removed from below the gum line to help prevent gum disease with an ultrasonic scaler. Sometimes, dental problems progress beyond the point of cleaning. In these cases, your veterinarian will recommend extracting teeth to keep decay, pain, and infection from spreading to the rest of your pet’s mouth. Just like your dentist cannot predict the number of cavities you may have, until a veterinarian has done a sedated oral exam, probing, and taken dental radiographs, this is the same case. In other scenarios, referral to a boarded veterinary dental specialist may be necessary.  Discuss any concerns with your veterinarian. 

Why Should I Choose Coastal Veterinary Care?

At Coastal Veterinary Care, we provide wellness exams which include a thorough examination, time with the veterinarian, client education, and a partnering with you to help your pet live its best life

The staff at Coastal Veterinary Care are passionate about making your animals feel comfortable and at home in our clinic. Our certified Fear Free employees have received extensive training about how to keep animals less stressed during their wellness exams and other veterinary procedures. Our cat clients will like that we offer tuna and brushings when their pet shows signs of discomfort, and we provide non-slip pads that prevent rising anxiety when they are placed on a slick surface. 

We’re Here To Care For Your Best Friend

We recognize that the bond between you and your pet is powerful and that you want them to be in the best health for as long as possible. At Coastal Veterinary Care, we strive to provide the quality pet care that the people of Myrtle Beach look for in veterinary practices. That’s why Dr. Laura Black, DVM, and her team are dedicated to providing compassionate, honest, and reliable service when you and your pet need it most. We are AAHA accredited which means staff undergoes extra training in anesthetic monitoring.  Additionally, Dr. Black attends continuing education in veterinary dentistry. So, please book an appointment today, and let us give your pet the care they deserve.