Should I Give An Older Dog A Tooth Extraction 

A tooth extraction operation for my pet dog, isn’t exactly something I typically spend time thinking about. Unfortunately like a lot of things in life, you only start thinking of it when it actually affects you personally. My Shih Tzu is what you might call a little “long in the tooth”. As dogs age, problems you were never aware of suddenly appear, like gum disease.

Dogs and cats are both prone to developing periodontal disease, another word for severe gum disease. It occurs more frequently as pets age, particularly among smaller breeds.

What Is Periodontal Disease?

This is inflammation and infection caused by bacteria which results from the buildup of plaque in a pet’s gums.

Can It Be Prevented?

Routine checkups and cleanings are the best way to prevent plaque buildup in a pet.

How Do You Tell If It Develops?

  • Consistent bad breath
  • Gums look irritated
  • Visible buildup of plaque
  • Discolored tooth
  • Salivating heavily
  • Trouble picking up food
  • Chews on one side of the mouth
  • Swallows without chewing
  • Has bumps or lumps in mouth

What Can Periodontal Disease Do?

Periodontal disease can cause chronic pain in a pet. It can also destroy a pet’s teeth and gums. If left long enough it can even damage a pet’s major organs, including the heart valves, kidneys liver. When you reach this point, you need to act.

Treatment of Periodontal Disease

If your pet is suffering from periodontal disease, it is likely teeth will have to be extracted. The cost can be quite prohibitive, depending on the amount of teeth. Also, vets use anaesthesia during the procedure, which can have significant risk with older pets, specifically if they have comorbidities. Still, vets will usually recommend tooth extraction if there is no other health issues in order to ensure a good quality of life for the pet.



Enjoy this blog? Let's stay connected ;)