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    Dog Health: Dog Dental Care Tips

Many people don't realize the health risk for your dog if his teeth are not cared for. It is very much like that of our human teeth. Many health risks and problems can occur to your dog's teeth and gums when not properly cared for. Dental care is just as necessary for your dogís health as it is for your own.

The potential risk for dental disease in your dog rises dramatically without routine and proper dental care. Studies taken, have shown that over 85% of adult pets (both cats and dogs) have some form of Periodontal Disease, which is the most common infectious dental disease. If Periodontal Disease is left untreated, problems can occur that may have otherwise been avoided. Including pain in your dogs mouth, bad breath and possibly even tooth loss.

Periodontal Disease can cause more serious health concerns for your dog if unnoticed for a long period of time, along with dental problems. An untreated infection can spread bacteria throughout the bloodstream, infecting his heart, lungs and other organs and can even be fatal in some cases. However, brushing your dog's teeth daily can help to prevent Periodontal Disease. Taking your dog to the vet for routine dental checkups can also help limit the risk of dental problems.

The stages of Periodontal Disease are outlined below:

Stage I: Gingivitis
A portion of the attached gum is inflamed and swollen. Plaque is covering the teeth. At this stage, treatment can help to reverse this condition before worsening.

Stage II: Early Periodontal Disease
The entire gum is inflamed and swollen. The dog's mouth is in pain and an odor will begin to become noticeable. Taking your Dog to the vet is essential at this point along with home dental care - you can still prevent this from becoming irreversible.

Stage III: Moderate Periodontal Disease
The gums are red and bleeding and becoming destroyed by infection and tartar. This may affect your dogís eating and his behavior. At this point it may be irreversible.

Stage IV: Advanced Periodontal Disease
At this stage, chronic bacterial infection is destroying the gum, tooth and bone in your dog's mouth. The Bacteria may be spreading throughout the your dog's entire body via the bloodstream and may damage the his kidneys, liver and heart.

Dry dog food and chew toys can help to clean teeth, but they arenít always helpful for cleaning at the gum line, which is where most dental problems stem from. Brushing your dogís teeth with a toothbrush and toothpaste made for dogs (do not use toothpaste intended for humans) will help keep your dogís teeth clean and will help remove and plaque and tartar while preventing it from starting.

It only takes a few minutes daily to brush your dog's teeth and he will thank you for it! When brushing his teeth, pay special attention to the outside of the teeth as they need the most attention. Brushing your dog's teeth regularly will ensure fresher breath, healthy gums and less expensive vet bills for you in the future!

If you think your dog may have some form of Periodontal Disease, contact your veterinarian right away to schedule a dental check up. Only your veterinarian can diagnose the disease and help you construct a proper and effective treatment plan.

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*Please Note: The information provided above is solely for the purpose of informing and educating our visitors and should not be used to replace the advice or care of a professional, qualified veterinarian.*