View Full Version : Dentist

Cathy T
11th May 2006, 03:59 PM
We had an excellent speaker at our club meeting last night. He was a veterinary dentist and had some really eye opening slides and great information. In fact, I am making appts for Jake and Shelby to see him ASAP. Jake will be 4 in August and has never had his teeth cleaned. At his last visit my vet said his teeth looked fine.

This dentist explained that visually a tooth may look great but you don't know what's happening until you really get a good look at the bone, root and under the gumline. Non-anesthetic cleaning will not allow this. He said if you want your dog to have pearly whites that are healthy all the way to the root you MUST do anesthetic cleaning. You cannot possibly see what is going on without it. I can't tell you how many slides he showed of beautiful teeth on the surface with terrible problems below the gum line.

Our club Pres took her dog to see him and the poor guy had 90% bone loss and had to have like 9 teeth removed. He was a show dog but she chose tooth removal over continuing his career for his health. She never would have known it because the visual part of the teeth looked great. In fact, she brought them to a meeting one evening, the day the teeth were removed, and you could see that the part of the tooth you could see looked great and then below the gum line they were a mess.

He showed some horrible slides of what goes on underneath. And brought back some horrible memories (my heart was just thumping) of dogs with oral cancer and the stressed the importance of catching it early. He even talked about partial maxilectomy (which is what Jake had) as the best way to treat a treatable cancer. When Jake had his cancer no one mentioned them until I met with his surgeon.

He advised brushing a minimum of 3 days a week. Believe me...after seeing what could happen we are making appoints and going to start brushing.

He said one of the biggest culprits is broken teeth. Your vet may see a broken tooth and say it's nothing...the dog is fine...but in actuality an abcess could be forming below the gum line. He also said broken teeth HURT!! One of the causes of broken teeth....nylabones!! Poor Shelby...no more nylabones baby girl. She really gnaws away on them. He suggested that they not chew on things that are so hard they can't be broken...they will chip teeth. A suggestion was something like the rubber booda bones with ridges.

Another thing he said was not to have deep cleaning when having any other kind of surgery involving opening the chest cavity, etc because of the risk of bacteria getting into the bloodstream.

Anyway, that was a super eye opening message.

11th May 2006, 04:32 PM
Will arm myself with the toothpaste not sure what flavour this one is and their brushes tonight - Darren will have to hold on to them...... they will have to get used to it.

11th May 2006, 05:46 PM
Cathy thanks for this informative post! Can I put it into the Health library? What an eye opener -- especially when they know gum disease is linked to heart disease -- so this is all especially important for our breed!!

Cathy T
11th May 2006, 06:44 PM
Please do Karlin! This was a real eye opener for me. I just wasn't aware that so much could go wrong in the mouth that wasn't visual to the naked eye.

12th May 2006, 05:53 AM
I am also a member of the same Cavalier Club and (sitting next to Cathy) also heard this very informative talk.

Another thing the dentist mentioned was eruption of adult teeth before the corresponding baby teeth have fallen out. The dentist said that having a baby tooth occupy the same space as its corresponding adult tooth can cause significant problems for the adult tooth. He stated that if you see an adult tooth begin to erupt while the baby tooth is still in place, the baby tooth needs to be surgically removed by a vet within a few days.

Here are two very informative links to his website:

Common problems


Our club is awesome, the guest speakers have been so informative!


12th May 2006, 01:38 PM
My Lottie is not a great chewer and so when she had to have an anaesthetic for an x-ray we asked the vet to clean her teeth. He discovered that she had a problem with her top front teeth- something to do with bone formation and that these two teeth were quite loose so he had to remove them. (Now all she wants for Christmas are her two front teeth :lol: ) So we keep an eye on them both now.
Julie and the girls

Cathy T
12th May 2006, 03:27 PM
I have an appt at my vet's office on Tuesday for Jake to get his teeth cleaned. Hoping they don't find anything negative. Then we'll get Shelby scheduled. Both of the women in the office who do the cleaning get updated directions from Dr. Niemic (the dentist who spoke at our meeting) so I feel confident they know what they are doing. But, he can't eat after midnight...that will be a real challenge!!