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Re: Dental treatment

Posted by:  Claudia A. Costa
Posted on:  April 18, 2001 at 17:51:18

In Reply to: Dental treatment
Posted by:  Chris Aucken
Posted on:  April 18, 2001 at 10:10:53

Question:

: Foster is almost 14, and is booked in for a dental tomorrow. I've had him for 6 months, before that he never got his teeth cleaned, and was given lots of toffees as treats (gross, huh?). Anyway, he has a terrible tartar problem and the vet says he may need to have some removed (the back ones are particularly encrusted) as well as scaled and polished. Could you tell me how he's likely to adapt to not being able to crunch his food so well?

: He's had a blood test which was Ok apart from elevated urea, apparently common in older dogs. The vet says he should be fine with the anaesthetic, but can you reassure me at all? He seems in great health apart from his teeth (and breath!!) - lots of energy and great fun.

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Hi Chris.

I learned this lesson the hard way with my older dog. Denatl care is CRITICAL.

My old mutt had teeth pulled at the age of 15. They were VERY concerned about the surgery because she also had congestive heart failure. But, inher case the teeth needed to be removed. Otherwise, she was in pain. Also, the infection would have spilled into her bloodstream and with her heart condition she would have died.

She came out of the surgery just fine and was soooooooooooo happy to have those rotten teeth removed. Poor baby, had toothaches.

We got the surgery done at a teaching hospital with FULL warnings to all about her age and condition. They did her first thing in the am as to not keep her there too long.

Ask your vet for the proper follow up care after the surgery to prevent further tooth decay. Also discuss your concerns regarding the anesthsia. They are real concerns for an older dog.

As for my present dog, she gets her teeth brushed once a week; eats hard food; and gets bones that do not splinter boiled for her to clean up her teeth.

Talk to you vet about your concrns about the surgery. As for your dog, it will not miss its teeth at all.

Good luck,

Claudia A. Costa
ccosta@stryker.com