Thursday, February 25, 2016

Dental Treats

Hello All!
                Since this is the final week of Pet Dental Health Month, I thought I would share some product information with you. Oh yeah! Thanks for responding to the Facebook poll about my fabulous blogs! I appreciate everyone’s input. But let’s be honest, I’m gonna keep doing me no matter what anyone else says!
                Any who… dental products for your fur babies. There are several options but I will go over a few of the most common ones. First, for my feline buddies… One word, GREENIES! These are my absolute favorite! I will jump through hoops, climb over mountains, swim across the ocean… Ok, maybe I have gone too far with that one! I will basically do anything for the cat nip flavor! Ask my girlfriends, they bribe me all the time with these treats, this is typically how I get my exercise because they make me chase them across the clinic! Silly humans! Besides being delish, theses treats are formulated to reduce tartar build up, clean teeth and keep breath fresh. All us cats need to do is chew! Now that is my kind of job! Natural ingredients are used and each treat is only 1.25 calories! Good thing because I am watching my figure, gotta stay trim!
                Second, for my dog pals, C.E.T Chews. These are great rawhide like chews that are easily digested and help reduce plaque and calculus with its unique texture. They also help keep breath fresh which we all know is very important for those smelly dogs! Yuck. Their dual enzyme system produces a natural antiseptic that helps with the fight against dental disease. These are a great tool to add into your pets’ daily routine.
                Lastly, toothpaste! That’s right, toothpaste! Believe it or not, you should really try to brush your pets’ teeth twice daily! There are special tooth brushes to help you do this. We have some complimentary brushes at the office. There is also a finger brush you can use. This is just a plastic sleeve you would place on our finger to act like a tooth brush. Now for the paste be sure to use enzymatic toothpaste made for pets. This type of paste does not foam and does not need to be rinsed. It is safe for your pet to swallow. They come in several yummy flavors too! Daily brushing will help decrease tartar buildup and improve their oral health.
                So there you have it! Of course we have all of these products at the office. Feel free to swing by for more information or to get a jump start on your pets’ dental care. 

Until next time
        -Murphy Cat


Friday, February 19, 2016

What Is a Dental?

Ever wonder what happens before, during and after a dental cleaning? This week I had my technicians go into detail with me what exactly is involved with dentals. Believe it or not, dentals on pets are just like human dental cleanings! Crazy, right?! But I mean, us animals should be cared for as well as humans are! (Personally, I think we should be treated BETTER than our humans, but that’s just me!) Any who, I will take you step by step through the ins and outs of dentals at SAH!
                First off, your pet needs an exam with one of our doctors to determine their dental status and what stage dental will be performed. (If you read my words of wisdom last week, you should know what the stages are…) 
                Second, a complete blood panel is done to evaluate how the body is functioning. This will let the doctor know if the patient is healthy or not and if it is safe to undergo anesthesia. Once that’s a go, the dental can be scheduled! At SAH we perform dentals on Thursdays. Admission is between 8:00 and 9:00 in the morning, too early for me! Plan on about ten minutes with the technician to review your pets dental plan for the day.
                Alright, now for the day of…
Dr. Ellis will perform another exam prior to any premedication and anesthesia to again confirm the patient is healthy and ok to move forward. A premedication is then given, this helps ease anxiety and relax the patient. My girls will then place an IV catheter in the front leg. This allows them to have quick access to the veins to administer medications and for the patient to receive IV fluids throughout the procedure. (Man are they are gonna have to pee when they wake up!) Once the catheter is in place, induction of anesthesia is given to allow intubation and gas anesthesia is started. Now the fun begins! I wish they would let me take a whack at polishing some nasty teeth! While on gas anesthesia, the assistant is monitoring vitals such as, blood pressure and pulse the whole time using high-tech equipment. Teeth are scaled to remove tartar and plaque and assessed for possible extractions. If extractions are needed, Dr. Ellis removes the teeth and places sutures to close the site. (They even hold on to the extracted teeth in case you want them as a souvenir! Gross!) Now the teeth are polished for a clean sparkling look and fluoride treatment is done as well. Fresh and clean! I bet your pets’ breath smells better that yours now! 
                And for the finale…
If we do any extractions, a laser treatment is done to help promote healing and decrease inflammation. The patient is removed from anesthesia and transferred to recovery. I’m wicked jealous of the set up, they get large blankets to snuggle on and cover up with. They even get a heat disc to make them nice and toasty! How come I don’t get that celebrity treatment!? I think I need to consult with my girls and change this! Recovery at home is about 2-3 days, just until the anesthesia is worked out of their system.
Now, the great thing about dentals is they typically do not need to come back! I mean, as long as things are going well at home, there is no need to see us again…Unless there were extractions of course, then Dr. Ellis does like to see the patient back in about 10-14 days to make sure things are healing well. Then, it is all up to you! Prevention is very important and we highly recommend daily teeth brushing or using a dental diet such as Royal Canin Dental. All of these products you can find at the office.
Well, there you go! Now you know all the ins and outs of dental care and cleanings! Now pick up that phone or go online to schedule an appointment with one of the doctors at SAH! Do it for your fur babies! They will thank you!
Until next time,
-Murphy Cat

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Dental Health Month, Part Two

I’m back!
How about this snow?! I love it. It is just so pretty, like me. I have the perfect view from my window perch. And, since it has been getting colder, my girlfriends at the office need extra heat (they are Always cold)… so they turn on a small heater that is conveniently under my perch! Talk about complete relaxation. I bet ya’ll are jealous! Just so you know, it has taken all of my will power to get up from my perch to write this blog… so I’m gonna keep it short and sweet! Like I promised last week, this week I will go over what signs your pet may be showing you that hint towards dental issues. Did you know there are also various stages of dental disease? Yeah, I’ll go over that too.

First, what to look for;

  • Bad breath. I mean, stinkier than normal, eww
  • Yellow or brown teeth. Just gross! I like my pearly whites!
  • Red or swollen gums. That just sounds painful doesn’t it?!
  • Decreased appetite or pain when chewing. Whelp, we all know I don’t have that problem!
  •  Excessive drooling/salivating. Again, just gross.
  • Facial swelling.
  • Head shyness

Alright, now that you know what to look for, what stage might your pet be in??

There are 4 stages, 4 being the worst!

  • Stage 1: You will notice mild redness and inflammation of the gums.
  • Stage 2: Periodontal pockets start to form between the gums and teeth but, no significant bone loss yet. Key word here guys…YET! (This is where it starts to get ugly)
  • Stage 3: Deep periodontal pockets form around the teeth. Now there is substantial bone loss
  • Stage 4: Bone loss is now OVER 50%, 50% guys! Complete tooth extraction is the only treatment.

Just talking about these stages makes my teeth hurt, I think I’m going to go bother one of the girls for a Greenie dental treat!

Now, the best way to check the status of your pets’ teeth is to schedule an appointment at SAH. Your pet may be due for a dental cleaning. The veterinarians at SAH will be able to tell you what needs to be done I mean, they are doctors after all!

Back to my nap I go! Until next time!
                      -Murphy Cat

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Dental Health Month, Part One

Happy National Pet Dental Health Month! This week I thought I would discuss exactly what dental disease is. This is a serious disease that can greatly affect your pets’ life.

Dental disease, what is it exactly? Well, there are 4 stages but we will start with the basics. First, bacteria in the mouth form an evil substance called plaque. The evil booger attaches to the surface of your pets teeth. But that’s not good enough for the plaque! It then teams up with the minerals found in saliva to help grow stronger! This team work then forms tartar. Now, plaque and tartar attack! They not only reside on the surface of the teeth but they also invade the gum lines. This friends, is not good! The bacteria in plaque and tartar secrete nasty toxins. These toxins damage the supporting tissues around the teeth. Before you know it, your teeth are falling out! Now, I don’t know about you, but I like ALL of my teeth! And guess what, it can even get worse! The bacteria that continue to invade the mouth can spread to the blood stream and travel through your pets’ whole body. This can cause them to be at a higher risk for heart, liver and kidney disease! Yikes! There has got to be a way to stop this invasion! You are in luck. There are several preventative measures you can take to help prevent dental disease.

* Daily teeth brushing. Yup, that’s right, get in there and brush your pets’ teeth! We have tooth brushes, finger brushes and pet tooth paste at the office.
*  Dental treats. An easy and yummy way to help break away tartar.
*  Dental diet. We have Royal Canin Dental Diet at the office.
* Early detection! Annual exams at the Sunderland Animal Hospital to evaluate your pets’ dental health.

There you have it, the ugly truth about dental disease! Call my girls at the office if you have any questions or want to set up a dental exam with Dr. Ellis. Tune in next week for what signs to look for.

Until next time!
-Murphy Cat