Veterinary Dentistry & Dental Surgery
Our Citrus County vets provide preventive and restorative veterinary dental healthcare and surgery for cats and dogs.
Comprehensive Dental Care
One critical component of oral and overall health for cats and dogs is routine dental care. However, most pets don't get the oral hygiene care they need to keep their teeth and gums healthy.
At our Citrus County, you'll find complete dental care services for your pet, from basics such as dental exams, teeth cleanings and polishing, to dental surgeries and x-rays.
We are also passionate about educating pet owners on dental health education and the need for a solid at-home oral care routine.
Dental Surgery in Citrus County
We understand that learning that your pet needs dental surgery can be overwhelming. We aim to make this process as stress-free as possible, for both you and your pet.
We'll do everything in our power to ensure your pet's experience with us is easy and comfortable. We'll thoroughly explain each step of the process to you before the procedure, including preparation and any post-operative care requirements.
We perform tooth extractions and gum disease treatment for cats and dogs.
Pet Teeth Cleaning & Exams
At least once each year, your pet should see us for a dental examination. If your dog or cat is more prone to dental issues than others, they may need to see us more often.
The vets at Dunnellon Animal Hospital can assess, diagnose and treat dental health problems in cats and dogs.
Your pet will need a dental checkup if you notice any of these symptoms:
- Tartar buildup
- Discolored teeth
- Reduced appetite or refusal to eat
- Extra teeth or retained baby teeth
- Bleeding from the mouth
- Bad breath
- Pain or swelling in or around the mouth
- Abnormal chewing, drooling, or dropping food from the mouth
- Loose and/or broken teeth
Before your pet's dental exam, we will complete a thorough pre-anesthetic physical assessment.
We offer pre-op bloodwork (not including urine analyses) for pets of any age that are scheduled to undergo a procedure requiring anesthesia. Bloodwork is required for any pets over 5 years of age.
Additional diagnostics, such as chest radiographs or an ECG may also be conducted. A complete oral examination (tooth-by-tooth) and charting will be conducted once your pet is under anesthesia.
Next, we will clean and polish the teeth (including below the gum line) and perform any tooth extractions that may be needed. We'll then apply a fluoride treatment to each tooth.
Finally, a dental sealant is applied to keep plaque from attaching to the enamel. If advanced periodontal disease is discovered, a treatment plan will be developed and the vet will review it with you.
- Follow-Up Care
If your pet has had surgery that required sutures, a follow-up appointment will be scheduled 14 days after the procedure to have them removed.
FAQs About Pet Dental Care
Here are some of the most frequently asked questions we receive from our patients about pet dental care.
- Why do pets need their teeth cleaned?
As a consequence of poor oral health, our pets can develop tooth decay or periodontal disease.
Just like in humans, when animals eat plaque attaches to their teeth and may build up into tartar if not regularly brushed away.
This can cause tooth decay, loose or missing teeth, periodontal disease, and infections in the mouth. That's why regular dental care is critical to preventing pain or disease in the gums.
- How can I tell if my pet has oral hygiene issues?
Our pet's behavior may indicate oral health problems. If your dog or cat is experiencing dental problems, you may notice them pawing at their teeth or mouth. They might drool excessively (and the drool may contain blood or pus). They may also grind their teeth, stop grooming sufficiently or yawn excessively.
Other symptoms of oral health problems include tooth discoloration, swollen gums, and bad breath. If the symptoms are painful enough, they may even keep your pet from eating. Learn more about symptoms tot he left under Pet Teeth Cleaning & Exams.
- What long-term problems can poor oral health potentially cause in my pet?
Besides causing problems ranging from bad breath and cavities to severe periodontal disease, oral health issues and conditions may lead to heart, kidney, liver and other diseases.
Tumors or cysts can develop, and your pet may also not feel well in general (if you've ever had a painful toothache or cavity, you know how it can impact your mood). Diseases related to oral health conditions can also shorten your pet's lifespan and cause significant pain.
This is why we steadfastly advocate for regular dental care as essential to animals' physical health and general wellbeing.
- What happens during a pet teeth cleaning appointment?
Your vet will examine your pet's mouth to check for oral health conditions or any symptoms needing treatment.
Tartar and other debris will be cleaned from your cat's or dog's teeth. If gingivitis, cavities or other conditions need attention, the vet will discuss these with you and offer advice on what you can do next.
In some cases, surgery will be required to treat serious conditions. Your pet will be provided anesthesia before a dental procedure to make sure they'll be comfortable and will not experience any pain. However, special care will be required post-surgery.
If you notice any of the symptoms above, book an appointment with us.
- What should I do at home to keep my pet’s teeth clean between dental appointments?
At home, maintain a good oral hygiene routine for your pet by brushing his or her teeth on a regular basis and provide dental chew toys. These will help remove plaque.
Do not allow your pet to chew on things that will damage their teeth, such as toys, bones, or objects that are too hard. Always contact your vet with any questions or concerns about your pet's oral health.
Veterinary Dentistry: Anesthesia & Your Pet's Oral Health
Cats and dogs will often react to dental procedures by struggling or biting, since they do not understand what is going on. We provide anesthesia to all of our patients before performing dental procedures. This puts less stress on animals and allows us to x-ray their mouth as needed.
New patients are always welcome.
We look forward to meeting your precious pet at Dunnellon Animal Hospital.