Hardy, an adorable 3 year old Norfolk Terrier, and his Mom came to us recently for an annual examination. Overall, Hardy was doing great; however, Hardy’s Mom did notice he had bad breath. When Dr. Reis lifted the lip to examine the mouth, teeth and gums, she noticed some tarter build-up and slight redness around the gums. The recommended treatment for tartar build-up and gingivitis is a teeth cleaning under anesthesia, full mouth radiographs so we can see tooth structure below the gum lines, and fluoride treatment to protect the teeth. We like to catch problems early so that we can maintain oral health and preserve teeth. When periodontal disease starts, it cannot be stopped or reversed. Periodontal disease leads to tooth loss and pain. Fortunately for Hardy and all our canine patients, periodontal disease can usually be avoided with daily brushing and periodic professional teeth cleaning.
We are pleased to report Hardy doing great at home after his teeth cleaning. He wanted you to know he wasn’t frightened by his dental experience at all. In fact, he loves attention and affection. He was a wonderful patient. His brother ended up needing more serious dental work and extractions a while ago, so Hardy’s parents made extra sure Hardy’s dental procedure happened as soon as he needed it.
Here are some more before and after pictures of our canine patients that have needed teeth cleanings and sometimes extraction work:
Here is a chart with pictures and descriptions of a mouth with gingivitis and the different stages of periodontal disease to help you understand what’s going on inside your pet’s mouth: