Pet Dental Health Month Encourages Pet Owners to Brush Up on Oral Disease Prevention

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In honor of National Pet Dental Health Month in February, the Texas Veterinary Medication Association (TVMA) is emphasizing the importance of maintaining optimum oral health in cats and dogs for the sake of their overall health.

Texas Veterinary Medical Association
By age three, most dogs and cats show signs of periodontal disease, according to the American Veterinary Dental College (AVDC).

February marks National Pet Dental Health Month, a time to raise awareness of the importance of maintaining optimum oral health in cats and dogs for the sake of their overall health. Poor oral health can negatively impact the rest of a pet’s body, such as the heart valves, liver and kidneys. The culprit is often periodontal (gum) disease, which is one of the most common diseases in cats and dogs. By age three, most dogs and cats show signs of periodontal disease, according to the American Veterinary Dental College (AVDC). Visiting your veterinarian to establish a comprehensive dental health plan is the first step toward promoting good dental health and the overall health of your pet.

“Periodontal disease involves bacteria that can cause significant infection in the mouth, and this infection can impact the health of the rest of the body, from the kidneys and the heart to the liver and lungs,” said Heidi Lobprise, DVM, DAVDC, a board-certified veterinary dentist and Texas Veterinary Medical Association member who practices at Main Street Veterinary Hospital in Flower Mound, Texas.

Pet owners can reduce the risk of periodontal disease by following a quality oral hygiene program, which includes taking pets in for routine physical examinations, professional treatment and home care. An at-home preventative dental care regimen may include brushing pets’ teeth daily with specially formulated toothpaste as well as providing dental chews, water additives and specially formulated dry pet food.

“With good dental care from puppyhood or kittenhood through the senior years, you can make a difference in the quality of life for your family pet,” Dr. Lobrise said. “As a veterinary dental specialist, I believe you can even improve the lifespan of these important family members as well, keeping them around and as healthy as possible for years to come.”

About the Texas Veterinary Medical Association
Founded in 1903, the Texas Veterinary Medical Association is a professional association composed of more than 3,700 veterinarians committed to protecting public health, promoting high educational, ethical and moral standards within the veterinary profession and educating the public about animal health and its relationship to human health. For more information, call 512/452-4224 or visit http://www.tvma.org.

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Dena Goldstein
Texas Veterinary Medical Association
since: 07/2009
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