Periodontal Disease in Dogs

Emily Walsh
Registered Veterinary Nurse

February is Pet Dental Health Month.

Periodontal disease or gum disease is one of the most common diseases found in our canine companions today. 

 So what is periodontal disease? It is a progressive disease that is caused by a build-up of bacteria in the mouth that eventually leads to damage of the gums, bones, and other supporting structures of the tooth. Unfortunately, some breeds are more predisposed to it than others. These breeds are small/toy breeds and brachycephalic breeds.

Due to the fact that this disease starts by developing below the gums the signs are not always obvious until the disease is advanced. Along with this, symptoms of the disease in dogs can vary greatly from dog to dog. For this reason, you should bring your dog in for an annual check-up so your vet can accurately assess your dog’s dental health! 

Some indicators for periodontal disease or that your companion may need to see a vet include:

  • Bad breath
  • Red or puffy gums
  • Bleeding gums
  • Loose teeth
  • Pus oozing from around teeth

You may also note some behavourial changes such as:

  • Reluctance eating or playing with chew toys
  • Smacking of lips or chewing differently
  • Pulling away when trying to examine teeth
  • Act more withdrawn in themselves

Fortunately, there are preventative measures you can put in place to aid in improving your dog’s dental health. This depends on the stage of the disease you are dealing with so it’s always best to give us a call at Rockhall. 

Dental checks this month are free, and your nurse/vet can best advise you. They will assess if your pet needs a descale and polish or are you going to have your dog join you in your own dental routine!

Some things you can do at home include:

  • Daily toothbrushing – this is the most important step and should be done with specialised canine toothpaste only. You can pick this up at your vets! Here at Rockhall we have a number of pet friendly toothpaste, but we recommend Oxyfresh Pet Dental Gel
  • Oral rinses – these can be added to your dog’s water bowl to help prevent plaque and tartar build-up
  • Dental chews and toys
  • Prescription diets – you should always speak to your vet before placing your dog on any specialised diet

Dental health checks with our nurses are free here are Rockhall, but for the whole month of February, we are offering 10% off all dental procedures and dental products, check out our monthly specials here

If you are concerned about your pet, give us a call on 061314203.