Animal Care: Why Is Regular Pet Dental Care Important?

Dental care for pets is critical to reducing the risk of gum disease. Gum disease is five times more expected in dogs than in people and can lead to cavities, gum problems, and tooth loss if left untreated. As a pet owner, you must assist your pet in maintaining proper oral hygiene.

What are the advantages of routine dental cleanings? 

Here are more reasons you should take your pet to a vet dentist every year.

A comprehensive oral check can reveal surface problems that aren’t evident.

A veterinarian will look for symptoms of disease or pathology throughout your pet’s oral cavity. Anesthesia is required for dental cleanings to ensure the pet’s safety; with blinding lights and sharp equipment, no animal would gladly consent to the treatment. Anesthesia permits doctors to check areas that an awake patient would never tolerate, such as under the tongue, throat, and gums.

Dental X-rays may reveal disease hiding beneath the surface.

Because of its massive roots, half of every tooth sits beneath the gum like an iceberg. Sixty percent of oral health problems in pets are unseen by the human eye and reside beneath the gum line. Experts can evaluate each tooth, root, pulp chamber, and surrounding bone and jaw by taking dental X-rays of the complete mouth. Dental X-rays can reveal painful conditions such as a cracked crown or root, tooth or root resorption, dental infection, bone erosion, and cancer.


Pets with these unseen ailments would suffer in silence if routine veterinar dentistry X-rays were not performed. The sickness or degeneration would become obvious over time, but the prognosis would worsen. A tooth can be saved or extracted, periodontal disease can be delayed, and cancer, if identified early, can be biopsied, removed, and treated.

Your pet’s teeth are polished and free of hazardous microorganisms.

Regular dental cleaning provides obvious benefits, such as clean teeth and fresh breath, but the benefits extend beneath the surface to a microscopic realm that we cannot see.


Plaque is formed by salivary bacteria that form a biofilm on the tooth’s surface. As it matures, layer upon layer, this coating turns yellow-brown tartar. Many owners comment on tartar’s resemblance to stone or cave formations, correct. Tartar hardens and cements to the tooth, necessitating the use of a plier-like hand instrument to break it off. Although tartar appears to be inactive, the bacterial population is constantly growing and hiding in two dangerous places: below the gum line, where it causes periodontal disease, and in the bloodstream, where it spreads infection throughout the body and causes chronic inflammation of internal organs.


Dental cleaning restores the natural brightness of your pet’s teeth and significantly reduces the bacterial burden. Annual cleanings decrease or eradicate all infections to keep the bacterial count in check and prevent the infection from advancing to life-threatening heart and kidney damage levels.

Oral masses can be discovered and biopsied early on.

Bad breath is usually a symptom of periodontal disease, but your pet’s mouth could be hiding something more sinister, like cancer. It is unusual to deliver anesthesia to a patient for a routine dental procedure only to discover a large lump in the mouth cavity. Populi, or benign gingival tumors, are not metastatic but can grow quickly, demanding surgical excision and even tooth extraction. Malignant tumors, such as sarcomas and carcinomas, can aggressively invade soft oral tissues and pierce the jaw bone, demanding extensive surgery and radiation.


A comprehensive examination of your pet’s oral cavity during their annual dental cleaning may discover any concerning growths that are not visible during a normal checkup. These tumors can then be biopsied to be diagnosed. Dog orthopedic surgery and therapy can begin as soon as possible, possibly before cancer has spread to the bone if they are cancerous.

The Bottom Line

Including tooth brushing in your dog’s daily routine, as with humans, will help avoid the formation of bacteria in their mouth. If you are unsure how to clean your dog’s teeth, a veterinarian can show you how and prescribe products. Introduce your pet to dental cleanings as early as possible, preferably when they are puppies, to get them habituated to the brushing process.