Dental Care  St. Petersburg, FL

We understand that keeping your pets healthy is your number one concern. One aspect that can commonly be overlooked is the importance of your pet’s dental health. Dental concerns may be the cause or the result of an underlying medical condition, and if left untreated can lead to serious health complications.

Dental care is vital to the overall health of any pet. Dental disease can lead to health issues with the heart, liver, and kidneys and has the potential to seep into your pet’s bloodstream. In fact, 80 percent of dogs and 70 percent of cats over three years of age suffer from some form of dental disease, making it the most common pet health issue among our pet population. At Grand Central Veterinary Hospital, we are proud to offer dental care as one of the veterinary services.

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Dental Care  St. Petersburg, FL

Signs of Oral Health Issues

  • Abnormal chewing, drooling
  • Chipped, broken, or missing teeth
  • Chronic bad breath
  • Difficulty eating
  • Discoloration of teeth
  • Facial swelling
  • Loose teeth
  • Plaque
  • Red, swollen, or bleeding gums
  • Reduced appetite

Your pet may also become irritable when they experience dental pain.

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Dental Care

Fortunately, many dental concerns can be prevented with good oral hygiene practices. Our dental services include routine cleanings, examinations, tooth extractions, and minor oral surgeries if necessary.

All procedures are performed under anesthesia for your pet’s health and safety. Prior to your pet’s appointment, x-rays may be used to evaluate your pet’s oral health in the jaw and gum line. Our office uses the latest advances in veterinary medicine allowing us to provide high-quality care.

We use an ultrasonic dental scaler to remove plaque and tartar from above and below the gum line and to clean the surface of every tooth. Your pet’s teeth are then polished to reduce future plaque buildup.

Your pet may also become irritable when they experience dental pain.

Dental Treatment

Before a dental cleaning or dental operation, your pet is physically examined to ensure they are in good health for the procedure. Pre-anesthetic blood work is usually performed within two weeks of any anesthetic procedure. This is to be sure that your pet does not have any underlying issues such as anemia, kidney or liver disease. Your pet is scheduled to be dropped off in the morning between 8:15 am and 9:15 am for check in. No food or water is allowed from midnight on the day of the procedure.

Your pet is always examined the day of the procedure. An intravenous catheter is placed so fluids can be administered during the procedure and anesthetic and pain medication can be given easily. Your pet will be given a sedative to relax them and then general anesthesia provided.

We always try our best to save your pet’s oral health, however, in some cases, oral surgery or extraction may be necessary. During your pet’s consultation, all treatment options will be explained and discussed so that you can determine which will be best for you and your pet’s wellbeing.

Once your pet is ready, the oral cavity is examined and teeth are scaled using a Cavitron or ultrasonic scaler to remove tarter and plaque and then the teeth are polished. The procedure is very similar to what humans experience at their dentist. If any loose teeth or broken teeth are identified, then they will be extracted. Any dental repairs such as root canals or crowns will be referred to a Veterinary Dental Specialist.

Usually your pet can go home between 3:30pm and 5:30 pm. Your Veterinary Nurse will notify you once your pet is awake and arrange a discharge time.

Why is General Anesthesia Needed?

Well with most humans, your dentist can explain what they are planning to do, and you can cooperate with your dentist. In veterinary dentistry, pets do not understand and inevitably cooperation is limited. During general anesthesia, your pet is monitored by a Cardell heart, respiration and blood pressure machine, just like a human would be monitored while under anesthesia in a hospital.

At GCVH we provide the most current form of monitoring for your pet while under anesthesia as well as using a state-of-the-art warming device to keep your pet safely warm throughout the procedure. A veterinary nurse is on hand to also assist and watch over your beloved pet.

Prevention is the best defense against oral health conditions. We recommend regularly brushing your pet’s teeth between professional cleanings to reduce plaque buildup. Dental chews or treats can also be used to freshen breath and help scrub off debris from your pet’s teeth. In some cases, your veterinarian may recommend a change in diet to promote better oral health.

For more information on animal dental care or to schedule an appointment, contact our office today at (727) 895-8387.