At your pet's yearly examination it may be determined that they require a dental cleaning. Routine veterinary dentistry involves prophylaxis (teeth cleaning), polishing and a full oral examination.
Dental prophylaxis is performed with your pet under general anesthesia. It involves cleaning the surface of each tooth and scaling below the gumline, where food, bacteria, and tartar build up. To ensure the safety of your pet, pre-operative blood work will be performed prior to the anesthesia.
During a dental procedure, your veterinarian evaluates your pet's teeth for fractures, caries (cavities), excessive wear, and other abnormalities. Your veterinarian will also examine around the gums to detect periodontal disease.
Sometimes teeth need to be pulled (extracted). Dental x-rays, if available, aid in selection of teeth to be pulled and to aid in evaluation of periodontal and other oral diseases. If your pet is found to have more advanced dental or periodontal disease, your veterinarian may recommend more specialized procedures.