Dog Teeth Cleaning Risks

Dog teeth cleaning risks

The popular resource, Pet Education, attributes oral disease in dogs as the most common health problem. It’s no wonder, since the teeth get the most workout than any other body part. The task of brushing dog teeth is not a simple chore that a pet owner can easily accomplish unless they are skilled and have the proper working knowledge. Fortunately, oral disease is a preventable condition and is best left to a qualified veterinarian who is accustomed to dog teeth cleaning risks. The proper and safe method for teeth cleaning involves complete sedation that allows the freedom to inspect and perform all the necessary tasks that must be performed in order to make sure the process will have no negative aftereffects. There is also a view of the natural way dog teeth cleaning can be accomplished, but it has some severe drawbacks that must be considered.
Dog Teeth Cleaning Risks

Dog Teeth Cleaning Risks

Inspection and Antibiotic Preparation
When considering dog teeth cleaning risks, it begins with a proper appointment where an evaluation can be preformed. This is important to guard against risks where the dog’s condition is not serious enough for immediate and emergency attention—a life-threatening circumstance. The veterinarian will conduct a pre-exam that will grade the oral condition on a scale from one to three, one being a mild condition and three being severe. Antibiotics may be administered two days before the cleaning treatment with a fasting the previous night. The antibiotics are important to reduce any swelling and ward off any bacterial spread and the fasting will reduce the chance of vomiting and queasiness after the sedation period. The pet owner will also be notified if any abscesses that are present which require minor surgery, or any teeth that must be pulled.
Dog Teeth Cleaning Risks

Dog Teeth Cleaning Risks

It is important that blood be drawn during the morning just prior to surgery at the very latest, if it has not been drawn a few days in advance. The blood work will indicate whether the dog can go under anesthesia safely, and sometimes the results are negative which will prompt the cancellation of the cleaning. A dog that has not had blood work performed may have weak or defective kidneys or liver, and this would pose a risk.

Sedation
Sedation is when the dog is anesthetized for brushing dog teeth. It can be considered the natural way dog teeth cleaning is performed since the animal is totally immobilized and the veterinarian has freedom to inspect and perform all necessary cleaning and surgical tasks. A standard IV catheter is inserted in the animal’s front leg, along with a pre-sedative to allow the placement of a trachea tube. When the dog is fully under, the procedure can begin; the cleaning and any surgery is performed. There are seldom any mishaps during such a procedure, other than a very infrequent allergic reaction to the IV substance, or in an extreme case, a death as a result of the IV toxicity to the system. Fortunately, neither happens very often, and if it does occur it is usually a result of the animal’s preexisting poor physical condition.
Dog Teeth Cleaning Risks

Dog Teeth Cleaning Risks

No Anesthesia and Home Cleaning
There are two ways dog teeth cleaning risks can be intensified and that is when a pet owner asks a veterinarian to perform the cleaning in this manner or when the owner performs the task themselves. They might consider this the natural way dog teeth cleaning is done and are abject to the use of drugs. However, this means the dog will be fully awake during the procedure and unlikely to be cooperative. The dog will likely move suddenly or jerk, causing a cutting injury to itself, especially against a dental pick. Any type of poke or jab could cause a laceration or gouge in the gum, and this could cause excessive bleeding.
Dogs are very sensitive when it comes to being probed in the mouth region and may bite, causing injury to the veterinarian or owner. This is because tartar removal and vigorous teeth cleaning in a sensitive and infected mouth area can be extremely painful. In addition, the animal may simply not hold still long enough to get all of the tartar substance completely removed which renders the task ineffective. Crucial areas of the disease may be missed, allowing for a future recurrence.
In hindsight, the natural way dog teeth cleaning can be accomplished might be the worst decision a pet owner could make, considering the health of their animal is the most primary consideration. In this case, simply brushing dog teeth is not the answer.
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